WARNING: Graphic content.
The horrendous moment a basketball player’s actual eyeball pops out of its socket was captured on film and it’s pretty gruesome…
This is not exactly what you might hope to happen, or indeed witness, if you were involved in the Breakers against Cairns Taipans game, but for one unfortunate player, this very thing happened.
Akil Mitchell was playing for his New Zealand team when the horrific incident unfolded.
He stepped up to challenge the ball that the Taipan’s team member Nnanna Egwu was clutching, when he accidentally caught Akil in the eye.
Normally a poke-to-the-eye might result in pain and blurred vision, but horrifyingly, Akil’s eyeball actually came straight out of his head.
Players ran to Akil’s aid as he lay sprawled out on the floor in agony, the Sun reports.
At the exact moment Akil collapsed to the ground, the camera panned across and caught the grim shot of his eye sticking out of his socket.
Eventually Akil was escorted from the court with a towel over his head and miraculously it’s been reported he has not suffered serious, lasting, eye damage.
Dillon Boucher, the Breakers’ general manager said:
Akil is sitting up and resting, and has vision to his injured eye.
While there is some damage, the early reports are very positive that the injury is not as serious as first feared.
Here’s a close up of the horrific injury for those who really want to see….
The game was stopped for 15 minutes and players and coaches offered to suspend the game, but Akil apparently wanted it to continue in his absence.
Assistant coach, Mike Fitchett said:
Akil was in the changing room and said, ‘Make sure we win the rebound battle’.
The guys wanted to keep playing – they knew that’s what Akil would have wanted in that situation.
Obviously it’s very difficult to carry on when you see something like that, but the guys did an admirable job.
Despite his trauma, Akil was clearly in good spirits as he sent out a jesting tweet about his injury:
?… too soon? Lol thanks for all the love, well wishes, and prayers tonight. I'm home and seeing fine, more tests tomorrow
— akil mitchell (@ajmitchell25) January 26, 2017
He told reporters:
With the palm of my hand I felt my eyeball on the side of my face. I could still see out of the eye.
I remember thinking oh man… this is kinda bad, but I actually felt it kind of out of place and that’s when I kind of freaked out a little bit.
Once I got in the ambulance they gave me a little pain medicine and some saline drops in my eye and I felt it slide back into place, which is also a really strange feeling.
It felt so good to be able to blink again.
Here’s the full version of the grim footage. Watch at your peril. You have been warned:
It’s not your ideal situation…
It’s good he’s on the road to recovery though and hopefully he can just block that traumatic incident out of his mind…