Somewhat lost in the euphoria of the Sounders 6-2 thumping of the Columbus Crew this afternoon is a bit of very bad news; Seattle forward O'Brian White has undergone surgery to remove a blood clot from his leg, the second such procedure this season. The underlying issue causing the blockages was thought to have been addressed and White was removed from the disabled list on July 12th, but news of a setback first emerged after the Sounders 0-0 draw against Chivas USA two weeks ago and the club announced that the procedure had been performed shortly before the kickoff of this afternoon's game.
This is obviously not good news as it would seem to imply that the doctors treating White were incorrect in their initial diagnosis. Given that White is likely seeing some of the best doctors in the region in hopes of addressing the problem, it seems reasonable to believe that whatever it is that is leading to the problems with White's arteries is a very complex issue indeed. White made his return to action as a substitute in the Sounders friendly loss to Manchester United and later appeared in a game with the Sounders reserves. Before undergoing the initial procedure White had found his groove with Seattle and looked to be an excellent off-season acquisition.
Though the club did not rule out a return this season, given the recovery time involved after the last procedure such a thing would seem highly unlikely. At this point the concern is less about White coming back this year and more about the future of his career as a professional soccer player. It's just simply not safe for someone with such a condition to play competitively and if doctors are unable to get a handle on things it could mean a premature end to White's playing days. Here's hoping it doesn't come to that; he showed a great deal of promise before his condition forced him to the disabled list and for such a young player to be cut down just as their career was getting started would be truly heartbreaking.