Two months ago, Gary Grinberg, better known as Gary the Numbers Guy, used numerology and astrology to explain to ThePostGame the success of Jeremy Lin, Tim Tebow and others, while also citing why certain athletes were prone to failure.
Most of the feedback was positive, according to Grinberg, but there were also critics that said it's ridiculous to explain sports performance based on birthdays and numbers. "Why does it go off the Gregorian calendar? Why is it that all people born on a certain day are athletes?" Grinberg said, rattling off some common complaints.
Grinberg gained some leverage on his critics Friday morning when the Magic announced Dwight Howard would miss the rest of the season because of back surgery.
In the story published Feb. 29 on ThePostGame, Grinberg predicted three NBA players would get injured in 2012: Andre Iguodala, Chris Paul and Howard.
"You look at the chemistry around a player with certain numbers and you know basically what direction they're going to go in," Grinberg said Friday afternoon. "I knew Dwight Howard was going to get hit. If I were the Orlando general manager, I would have traded this guy way before the deadline because I knew this guy was never going to be the same ever again. He's still a good player, but he's never going to be the dominant player he once was."
At the time of Grinberg's prediction, Howard had only missed seven games in seven and a half NBA seasons. But those statistics do not affect Grinberg's analysis. Only numerology statistics determine his predictions.
From a numerology standpoint, Grinberg had reason to believe the injury bug might bite Howard. The Numbers Guy has found that players with a total numerology number of seven tend to be injury prone.
(Note: Total numerology is found by adding up the digits in an individual's birthday and adding the sum's digits together. For example, Howard's birthday is Dec. 8, 1985. Therefore, 1+2+8+1+9+8+5=34. Howard's total numerology number is 7 because 3+4=7).
Back in February, Grinberg gave ThePostGame a list of injury-prone sevens, which included Brandon Roy, Grant Hill, Andrew Bogut and Baron Davis.
Now Howard can be added to that list.
"Whenever you're a seven, unless you're born in the Year of the Dragon like Tim Duncan, you're asking for trouble," Grinberg said. "The sevens bodies just break down. I don't care how big and how muscular they are. Their bodies will break down."
Do not consider Grinberg psychic just yet. (He insists he is not. He just plays the numerology percentages.) The numerologist originally predicted that Howard's injury would not occur until after his birthday on Dec. 8.
"I thought he would have at least a few more months before that happened," he said. "I knew it was very possible for it to happen this early. I didn't expect it to happen this early."
Grinberg believes a more serious injury might have occurred around the time of Howard's birthday, if the Magic medical staff did not address the issue now and decide on surgery.
"From what I understand, if the doctors didn't catch what they caught with his back, it may have been a lot worse, so he definitely made the right decision," he said. "He could have messed up his career if he kept playing."
According to Grinberg, the Magic could have kept Howard playing a bit longer this season if they followed numerology. With Howard being a seven, the Magic should have kept better care of him when he started to experience back spasms. How?
"I would have rested him on the 7, 16 and 25 days of the month," Grinberg said. "Those are days you don't want people who are injury prone playing on."
Howard's final game of the season: April 7.
Grinberg also thinks his Iguodala prediction has been confirmed. The 76ers star missed two games in late March with left patella tendinitis. In the game before the injury, the Sixers defeated the Celtics to give themselves a two-game lead in the Atlantic Division. Since the first game Iguodala sat out with the injury, the Sixers are 5-9 and Igoudala has only had more than 20 points once.
As for Paul, Grinberg insists the Clippers should be worried.
"I thought it'd happen before Howard," he said. "I thought we'd be talking about Chris Paul by now before Howard. Chris Paul is what everyone should be paying attention to."
Grinberg maintains his prediction of the NBA Finals featuring the Thunder and Heat. He has not chosen a winner yet, but predicts the play of James Harden will be the X Factor based on numerology.
The Numbers Guy knows it is tough to shush the critics. The Howard injury gives him some credibility to stand on, but he has a few words for the non-believers.
"People ask about how come the system works. Well, I'll tell them the same way I tell scientists," he said. "When they explain why gravity works, I'll listen. You know, you can't see the wind, but you can feel it if you put your hand out the window. Some things you can't explain. Everything in this universe revolves around numbers and the law of averages.
"When people look at the law of averages, if they add up every person in the NBA, with every single number they have, they’re going to have a majority of the players as ones and elevens, but they're going to find out a majority of the players who get injured all the time are born on 7, 16 and 25 days of the month or total numerology. That's something statistically people can do to prove me wrong. If I'm wrong, prove it, but no one will be able to. When people aren't able to prove me wrong, they're going to say ridiculous things because they don't understand the science."
Of course, you don't need numerology to think there is a great chance of seeing a Thunder-Heat series in the Finals, but Grinberg goes a little bolder with a prediction about LeBron James.
"LeBron James, Chris Bosh, Deron Williams and Carmelo Anthony are all born in 1984, the year of the Rat," he said. "They all left their teams last season. That is common for Rats. They do not stay in one place too long. LeBron James will not end his career with the Miami Heat."
As for baseball, the Cleveland resident predicted poor 2012 seasons for Shin-Soo Choo and Rafael Perez, as well as Red Sox pitcher Josh Beckett. He also predicted injuries to Cliff Lee and Adam Wainwright, who is returning from an injury that kept him out of the entire 2011 season.
Time will once again tell if Grinberg's numerology is credible. (Update: Lee was placed on the 15-day disabled list Saturday, the day after Grinberg spoke with The PostGame, because of an oblique strain. The injury occurred Wednesday but was not revealed until Saturday.)
"I'm not psychic. I'm just a numerologist," he said. "Men lie, women lie, but numbers never lie."
Popular Stories On ThePostGame:
-- Beach Volleyball Champ Kerri Walsh Prepares For Olympics As Mom Of Two Toddlers
-- Oscar De La Hoya Guest-Stars On Nick Cannon's Ncredible Health Hustle
-- Jennie Finch Offers Advice For First-Time Olympians
-- Kerri Walsh Vouches For Pregnancy Pilates