4 physicians treating men's Final Four basketball teams

Orthopedic Sports Medicine

The four remaining teams in the men's collegiate NCAA basketball tournament are facing off in this weekend's Final Four in Phoenix.

Here are the physicians treating players on the four top teams of the 2017 NCAA tournament:




Russell VanderWilde, MD, of Spokane, Wash.-based Northwest Orthopaedic Specialists is team physician for Spokane, Wash.-based Gonzaga University men's basketball team.


Dr. VanderWilde specializes in sports injuries and arthroscopic procedures as well as care for knee, shoulder, hip and elbow injuries. He has practiced at Northwest Orthopaedic Specialists since 1993 and has served as a team physician for Gonzaga since 1994. Certified by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery, Dr. VanderWilde is also a member of the Arthroscopy Association of North American and the American College of Sports Medicine.  


Dr. VanderWilde graduated from Seattle-based University of Washington School of Medicine before completing an orthopedic internship and orthopedic surgery residency at Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic. Dr. VanderWilde went on to complete a sports medicine and arthroscopy fellowship at Los Angeles-based Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic.


North Carolina


Thomas Brickner, MD, of Chapel Hill-based University of North Carolina School of Medicine is head team physician for the Chapel Hill-based University of North Carolina's men's basketball team.


Dr. Brickner has been a team physician for the University of North Carolina since 1996 and is head team physician for men's wrestling, men's tennis, men's golf, women's soccer, women's field hockey, women's crew, women's softball and women's gymnastics in addition to men's basketball. He was chief physician and medical department head for the U.S. Antarctic Program during two of his five years in the U.S. Navy and is board certified in family medicine with a certificate of added qualification in sports medicine.


After graduating from The University of Toledo (Ohio) College of Medicine, Dr. Brickner completed a family practice residency at Toledo Hospital before completing a fellowship in primary care sports medicine at Findlay-based Northwest Ohio Center for Sports Medicine.




Greg Skaggs, MD, of Eugene-based University of Oregon is director of athletic medicine for the University of Oregon men's basketball team.


Dr. Skaggs spent 10 years in private practice in Oregon, three years practicing part-time with the University of Oregon Athletic Medicine Department and has been a full-time team physician with the University's athletic medicine department since 2007. His research and sports medicine expertise played an instrumental role in the University's design plans for The Marcus Mariota Sports Performance Center in Eugene, according to Oregon Live.


Dr. Skaggs obtained his medical degree and completed his residency at Charlottesville-based University of Virginia before completing a sports medicine fellowship at the University of California, San Diego.


South Carolina


Christopher George Mazoue, MD, of Columbia, S.C.-based University Specialty Clinics is team physician for Columbia-based University of South Carolina's men's basketball team.


Dr. Mazoue is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon with a subspecialty in sports medicine and arthroscopic surgery. He specializes in complex shoulder and elbow surgery, shoulder reconstruction, shoulder replacement and complex knee injuries. He is a member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine, and currently serves as associate professor of orthopedic surgery at the University.  


Dr. Mazoue graduated from New Orleans-based Louisiana State University School of Medicine before completing his orthopedic surgery residency at Dallas-based University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and completing a sports medicine fellowship at the American Sports Medicine Institute in Birmingham, Ala.


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Dr. Neal ElAttrache performs minor arthroscopic knee surgery on 76ers' Joel Embiid: 3 insights into the process

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