After Connor McDavid went leg-first into the goalpost against the Calgary Flames last April, the Edmonton Oilers superstar says he kept quiet regarding the severity of his injuries to avoid outside noise and to be able to focus on his recovery.
"I think the main focus was just getting healthy," McDavid said, according to Sportsnet's Chris Johnston. "I didn't need any pressure (from the) media, I didn't need any more questions."
In a documentary called "Whatever It Takes," which was released Friday, McDavid revealed the full extent of his injuries: a full PCL tear, a torn meniscus on both sides of the knee, a cracked tibia, and a popliteus muscle that was torn off the bone.
"There was already lots of questions going on, so it was actually really nice just to be able to focus on myself and not have to answer questions and (deal with) the pressures of all the media and all the fans and stuff like that," McDavid said.
A doctor recommended undergoing surgery, which would've put McDavid's 2019-20 season in jeopardy and didn't guarantee that his knee would fully recover. McDavid had doubts about the procedure and, after a separate medical opinion recommended rehabilitation, opted to rehab his leg to avoid risking any long-term impediments from the unique operation.
"I'm a 22-year-old kid at the time and you never want to miss a season and you never want to go through a surgery that - I'm not going to call it risky or anything like that, but there's lots of questions," McDavid said. "It's not like it's an ACL where doctors can do that almost in their sleep. It's a PCL, and that's a surgery that only a few people can do and it's not been real mastered."
Appearing in his fourth consecutive All-Star Weekend, McDavid is in fine form as he looks to put the injury behind him. He leads the NHL in points (76) through 49 games this season and is on pace to tally a career-best 127.
"I feel real good. I don't think I'd be sitting here at the All-Star Game if I wasn't," McDavid said. "I feel good on the ice and I'm happy with how I've been playing."