Hawks' Jeff Teague says he played with tear in patella last season

An All-Star in 2015, Atlanta Hawks guard Jeff Teague didn't play well enough for a return trip to the All-Star Game last season. Instead, Teague seemed to plateau and didn't really take the next step to becoming an elite point guard in the league.

Teague did improve from the three-point line, shooting 40 percent and was excellent at making catch-and-shoot jumpers while also excelling at driving to the rim. Yet Teague's defense was lacking at times and the Hawks seemed to favor reserve Dennis Schröder in key moments of games.

So was it just a down year for Teague or was there something more serious going on?

Well, according to Teague himself, he played with a tear in his patella tendon all season. Teague shared this news on social media before quickly deleting the post. Here is a screen shot though:

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Jeff Teague's deleted social media posts. Imgur

According to Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Hawks are aware of Teague's posts but have not commented on them yet. However, ESPN's Mike Mazzeo confirms Teague's social media posts and reports that the Hawks guard did not need surgery:

If Teague doesn't need surgery then perhaps his torn patella tendon isn't that serious but it is strange that he wouldn't rest during the season to let the injury heal properly. Especially since based on his now deleted social media posts, Teague almost seems bitter that he had to play through it during the season.

Also, Teague has been on the trade block since basically the beginning of last season and was recently rumored to be part of a deal that involved the Sixers' Nerlens Noel. If he is injured that could have an impact on any trades the Hawks will try to make that involve him.

Overall though this is just a strange situation as normally players themselves don't announce that they've been injured. That's for their respective teams to do. But with Teague sharing his injury status, it seems like the Hawks and him aren't truly seeing eye-to-eye which may be one reason Atlanta is trying to trade him.

Jeff Teague says he played hurt during the 2015-2016 season. (USATSI)
CBS Sports Writer

Ananth Pandian has been writing about all NBA-related things including the social and lifestyle aspect of the sport for CBS Sports since 2015. His name is actually easy to pronounce, just remember it is... Full Bio

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