Kevin Durant’s clinic
How to recover from one of the sports’ worst injuries
BY TOM HABERSTROH
In the 2019 NBA Finals, with just under 10 minutes left in the second quarter, Kevin Durant crossed the ball through his legs in isolation against Toronto Raptors big man Serge Ibaka. Durant’s legs spread wide, like mishandled chopsticks. As he propelled himself forward mid-dribble, he pushed off his right foot and … you know what happened next. Perhaps the highest-profile leg injury in NBA history.
A torn Achilles tendon is an injury that often ends careers. A ruptured Achilles ended Isiah Thomas’s 13-year Hall of Fame run. Elgin Baylor attempted to return from a torn Achilles in 1970 before mercifully calling off the comeback tour nine games in. Kobe Bryant was never the same after that April night against Golden State in 2013.
A game or two into Durant’s return, it felt like the league was holding its collective breath. Eighteen games in, though, he looks incredible. Somehow at 32, he’s dunking more than his rookie year. As a Net he’s averaging an astounding 29.5 po…
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to TrueHoop to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.