It appears that Eric Stevenson will not be playing this season at any level. After being waived by the Red Bulls on February 13th, he made the decision to focus on getting his body back to 100%.
Caption: "Hanging up the boots for the year, but I'll be back, hip surgery was a success, Thankyou to family and friends for All The thoughts and prayers."
Stevenson was drafted in the second round of the 2014 MLS SuperDraft with the 34th pick. He made one MLS appearance and featured during the CONCACAF Champions League. Stevenson has been dealing with injury issues going back to his time at Akron.
The biggest obstacle holding Stevenson back in his senior season was a series of injuries. After playing most of the second half of the season with a torn labrum in his hip, he also picked up tendinitis in his hamstring. Embick said he could only play Stevenson for 45 to 60 minutes per game at most, and he played at about a 65-percent level the second half of the year. Because of the delicate nature of the injury, he could not re-enter a game after cooling down.
After the season ended, Stevenson began a rehabilitation program that would allow him to play in the MLS Combine. At this point, it’s more about pain tolerance, he said, as the injury won’t get any worse by playing on it. "I wouldn’t say it’s 100 percent. It still kind of hurts a little bit, but I think I’ll be good enough to show my abilities at that level," he said. "This season, I kind of struggled with it just hurting a little every game, but with proper rest and a little bit more rehab, it will be fine. … It was a little frustrating, this season. I’ve been doing a lot of stuff since our season ended, trying to get it feeling as good as it could be."
Best of luck to Eric as he begins the tough grind of rehab and I hope we see him on the field again soon (preferably in a Red Bulls jersey).
(h/t Dan Covello)