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That Image Of "Paul George's X-Ray" Isn't Really His

You pretty much know what an X-ray of Paul George's compound leg fracture from Friday night might look like. But lots of folks wanted to see scans of his specific snapped tibia and fibula. So, starting this weekend, this image started making the rounds:

Gross, right?

The internet loves to pass around unsourced images that seem like they might be legit. Look at a Google search or a Twitter photo search to see how many places it appeared.


But where did it come from? A number of sites credited the Joe Rose Show, a Miami radio morning show, which tweeted out the image early Monday morning with the hashtag #sources. But it was making the rounds days before.

Patient zero for the image appears to be the Twitter account @TheNBACentral, one of those many accounts filled with news, photos, videos, and memes, generally poorly sourced. At 10:32 a.m. on Saturday morning, it tweeted the photo as "An X-Ray of Paul George's leg." It spread from there.

But the image is old, at least a year old. We know because it made the rounds last year, purporting to be an X-ray of Louisville player Kevin Ware's compound leg fracture. "Paul George's" version has been cropped, the color adjusted, and an "R" added to it, but it's the same X-ray.

What was it originally? An image of a generic compound fracture, not belonging to anyone famous, used by CNN's Sanjay Gupta to tease a TV appearance.


We look forward to seeing the unknown X-ray the next time an athlete suffers a horrific break.

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