The wife of the US PGA champion Jason Day was released from hospital on Friday after being on the receiving end of a LeBron James crash landing during an NBA game.
Ellie Day was taken from the Quicken Loans Arena on a stretcher with her head immobilised to the MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland after the accident in the match between the home side and Oklahoma City Thunder.
Cleveland’s four-time MVP was chasing a loose ball in the fourth quarter on Thursday when he tumbled towards the seats and Day, sitting next to her husband ringside, bore the full impact of his 113kg frame.
James said he had spoken with Ellie Day while she was being helped by medical personnel during a stoppage in play. “I squeezed her hand and she said she was OK,” he said. “She was just a little weary.”
Before he was given more information on her James, who scored 33 points, was noticeably shaken when he left the floor following the Cavaliers’ 104-100 win.
“Hopefully, she is doing well,” James said. “The guys told me she’s doing great now. For me, just going for a loose ball, tried to keep the possession going, I just hate that that was the end result.”
Later, James tweeted: “Ellie Day I hope you’re doing okay! My apologies! Hope u guys come back to another game soon. Love LJ!”
James said if she had been pregnant, he would have jumped over the first row of seats. Day had given birth just a month earlier to the couple’s second child, a girl named Lucy.
Jason Day, who lives in a Columbus suburb, accompanied his wife as she was carried from the floor. The couple have attended Cleveland games, and she was pregnant with their second child when they went to an exhibition this year in Columbus. That night, the Cavaliers guard JR Smith bought candy floss for the Days’ son, Dash, while he sat on the bench.
LeBron James crashes into Jason’s Day wife, Ellie Dayhttps://t.co/YHdgJZ2cU7
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) December 18, 2015
Before his wife was injured, Jason Day took part in a promotion during a timeout. As fans cheered, the Australian chipped foam basketballs into the crowd.
The Cavaliers coach David Blatt has long been nervous about the safety of fans sitting so close to the action. “Honestly, the only thing I saw was LeBron diving for the ball to save the ball,” Blatt said.
Ellie Day I hope you're doing okay! My apologies! Hope u guys come back to another game soon. Love LJ!
— LeBron James (@KingJames) December 18, 2015
“I kind of got blocked and just saw a sea of bodies. We all hope that she’s OK. It’s always concerned me, the sideline seats. Because things like that, when you’re talking about players of this speed and physicality and effort level, it’s not a simple thing.
“The powers that be are the ones that really need to decide how to deal with that. He made an honest attempt at the basketball.”