The 32-year-old is back after a dangerous Achilles’ tendon injury.
Life has come a full circle for Kevin Durant. The last time he played in the NBA was in Game 5 of the 2018-19 NBA Finals as a member of the Golden State Warriors. Fast forward 18 months, he is back from an Achilles’ tendon injury and will face the Warriors on the opening night of the 2020-21 season wearing the Brooklyn Nets’ jersey.
The two-time NBA champion said he has tried to be the best version of himself while returning to the much-awaited on-court action.
He stated, “Every drill that I’ve done, I’ve been going as hard as I could. I’ve been in the league for 14 years. Even if I didn’t have an Achilles’, I probably wouldn’t be 100 percent. So the wear and tear over time, I guess, but I feel solid. It actually wasn’t that frustrating, to be honest. I enjoyed having a lot of ‘me time’ away from you all and the NBA life in general.”
Before the injury stopped him in tracks, Kevin Durant was one of the most feared basketball players in the world winning two titles with the Warriors and the Finals MVP in both the championship runs. A few years before getting his championship rings, he had already established his credentials winning the League MVP in 2014 playing for Oklahoma City Thunder.
When asked if he was back to his MVP form, he shrugged off the question saying he was feeling good playing the sport and not thinking about the awards at the moment. However, Kevin Durant admitted he would find it difficult to be judicious coming at the back of a long injury layoff.
“I enjoy playing an if and when Coach tries to pull me out early unexpectedly, of course, I’m going to push back, but I know they have my best interest,” the Nets superstar said.
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He will form one of NBA’s blockbuster pairing with his friend Kyrie Irving that will look to dominate the Eastern Conference. Speculations are rife that James Harden could also come to Brooklyn.
“We both respect each other and we know each other’s game inside out. We know what championship level basketball looks like. Whatever happens, we have to be prepared for everything. I heard all the noise and James potentially wanted to come to the Nets. Nothing is set in stone till it is set in stone,” Durant concluded.