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Home / Sports / Kevin Durant injured on Achilles: How this affects the NBA finals, the fallout of the free agency, and the long-term prospects of the superstar

Kevin Durant injured on Achilles: How this affects the NBA finals, the fallout of the free agency, and the long-term prospects of the superstar

In the worst case scenario, Kevin Durant, who returned to the NBA finals after having more than four weeks off with an initially mildly diagnosed calf load, crashed out of Game 5 in the second quarter and you knew it was bad immediately. Durant reached for his right Achilles tendon . He had to be helped off the ground. And as cameras followed him into the dressing room, not only did the NBA finale change.

It was the entire NBA.

On Wednesday, Durant announced that he underwent surgery to repair a broken Achilles tendon.

We know Durant should be the biggest free agent domino in a presumably landscape-changing summer. He can still be. But that is certainly in the air. Just like this NBA finals, when the Warriors won the game 5 1

06-105 in the absence of Durant and returned to Oakland for the last game in Oracle's history, Arena.

From the injury itself to the effects on this series and this summer, here's everything you need to know about the Durant situation.

The piece

Durant scored 11 points in 3-of-3 deep-shooting and looked great on his return . The warriors hummed aggressively, and it honestly looked as if the fairytale stories of Durant, who came back to save the day, were within reach of reality.

Here's how the Achilles tendon cracking is explained:


Here, too, is a broken right Achilles tendon. Durant has been successfully operated.

How long will Durant be outside?

"It's 8-12 months," Dr. Alan Beyer, Orthopedist and Managing Director of the Hoag Orthopedic Institute, told CBS Sports on Tuesday. "Usually closer to the year when we saw it with other NBA players with this injury."

Of course, DeMarcu's cousin suffered the same injury in February 2018 when he was with the Pelicans and returned to action with the warriors in January 2019. John Wall recently had his Achilles in an off-season crash at his home and the expectation surrounding the league is that he might miss out on anything next year, ahead of Durant in the recovery process. Conclusion: There is a chance, maybe a good chance, that Durant will miss everything in the next season.

Will he ever be the same player?

"It's hard to say, as we've seen with Kevin and the initial injury, everyone's reacting differently," Dr. Beyer to CBS Sports. "I say this: if you reconstruct an Achilles to tie your repair back exactly to the bond that existed before, it's very difficult to do just that, then you'll get some scars in the healing process itself, and there will be a certain contraction of the Tissue so that the tendon can wind up a little tighter than it started.

"Well, for an average person, this is okay because you only ask them to return to everyday life functions like walking, regular jogging, just normal "Non-explosive movements," Dr. Beyer continued. For an NBA player who has to jump explosively and cut and move in quick bursts, this is a huge obstacle to overcome. And it's not just the vertical jump. For example, if you lose only a small portion of your jump, the arc you have used all your life is actually a little bit destroyed. So it affects everything. It can be a devastating injury. I mean, you can count the people who had the injury and come back to get even closer to what they were before. There are not many.

CBS Sports NBA analyst and former NBA player Raja Bell was more direct.

"I do not think Kevin Durant will ever be the same player," Bell said. That does not mean he will not be really good. He's 6-foot-10 and shoots the skin off the ball. But in terms of being the player we've seen so far, no, I do not think he can do it. Find me an athlete who is 100 percent equal to an Achilles tear. "

Durant is 30 years old and will be 31 at the beginning of next season, he's not a puppy, but he's not over the mountain. He's also relatively light, so it's not as if Achilles was At the same time, KD relies much more on its explosiveness and directional change, both offensive and defensive than conventional big men, which is really an unknown, but even if Durant is 85 or 90 This is still an elite NBA player.

From a Sobering Perspective on Players with Look at the table below (VORP is Value Over Replacement Player and is just another way of saying As impressive as these players were to Achilles, as you will see, almost all of these players have become less impressive after the injury.)

How will the injury of Durant arise affect the market for free agents? [19659008] The few people I have spoken to in the league since then believe that there will still be a robust market for Durant's services and that there will be teams that are still ready and indeed eager to help him Offering a Maximum Contract – that would be four years, $ 164 million if signing outside of Golden State – even knowing that Durant is likely to miss the first year of this deal in rehab, and maybe it would not last into the rehab second year, year in which he fully recovers. For example, we saw Gordon Hayward go through a year of rehab and another year of fighting to rediscover his game.

"People do not seem to be affected by [the injury]," a Western conference manager told CBS Sports on Tuesday. "Delayed but expensive satisfaction, I think."

There is a possibility that Durant might consider exercising his 2019-20 player option with the Warriors for $ 31.5 million, rehabilitating it throughout the year, possibly returning for the next year's playoffs, and then enter the free hand in 2020. But that is unlikely. Adrian Wojnarowski said on ESPN's "Get Up": $ 31.5 million for the next season. This is really the case if you could not find another team to sign a contract. Because if he withdraws from the contract and even if he makes a short deal with another team – a two-year deal – that starts at $ 38 million. I still think there will be a market for Kevin Durant to get a long-term contract, whether it's a maximum contract or an almost maximum one. He'll be 32 before he plays again, if he actually misses the whole next season. But these $ 31 million will only be eligible if there is nothing left after the conquest of the League, or if the warriors have decided that they do not want it. I would be shocked if the Warriors were unwilling to make long-term deals with Kevin Durant. But basically, he'll be a $ 38 million Redshirt player no matter who he signs with or decides to sign up for next year.

ESPN's Bobby Marks confirmed almost the same thing:

In other words, all the teams that wanted to track Durant from this injury are likely to The same option also exists for the long-term signing in Golden State: if Durant wants to earn as much money as possible with the unknown, how long he will recover, he could conclude a five-year contract with the warriors for a maximum of $ 221 million

A manager wrote to CBS Sports:

"I believe Bob Myers gave [Durant’s business partner and manager, Rich] Kleiman some security when KD plays [in Game 5 and the rest of the series] regardless of whether we K.D.

Translation: The warriors knew it was a risk to get Durant back on the market. So did Durant, who obviously did not feel ready to return in the first four games of the series, and there were even reports that his attempt to train on Sunday did not go well and he was closed fairly early.

This does not mean that the warriors were irresponsible and that Durant finally made the last call. He wanted to help his team. The belief in this leader is that in the worst case, the warriors would take the risk they had taken and offer Durant the full maximum he possibly risked by hurting himself and hurting himself worse, which was obviously happening.

In the end, Durant will be financially fine and he will probably still have a selection of teams as a free agent. However, this does not mean that freedom of movement as a whole has not changed for all involved.

Some specific fallouts for free agencies:

  • New York Knicks: This was a big hit for the Knicks. Here they have been planning for two years to open the required cap space for the signing of not only Durant, but also a second free agent who is to collaborate with him this summer. Well, even if they get Durant, he probably will not play for them next season. Does that affect the decision of a second star to join him? The Knicks may be willing to make a year of money and accept that they are bad for Durant, but will Kyrie Irving or another star player do the same? Can the Knicks now refuel for another year as Durant rehab and try to win Anthony Davis as a free agent in 2020? What used to be in terms of the Knicks, who got Durant and maybe another star and became title contenders overnight, like a slam dunk, is now nearly off the table, at least for the next season.
  • Widely Open West: When the thought came that Durant would leave the Golden State as a free agent, we knew that the West would be more open than ever before in this five-year run of the Golden State. Well, Durant probably will not play anywhere this year. The West is so wide open. In this sense …
  • Los Angeles Clippers: The Clippers have room only for a free agent, unless they trade with Danilo Gallinari. If they can not land Kawhi, would they be prepared to use their one-max slot for a guy in Durant who's unlikely to play for them next season? If not, how will they use this cap space? One-year deals to make an attempt at Anthony Davis in 2020? Are you satisfied with a smaller star? This really feels like kawhi or bust for the clippers.
  • Brooklyn Nets: The Nets exchanged Allen Crabbe for the Hawks, opening the opportunity to create two maximum wages this summer (they would have to run D & # 39; Angelo Russell to open the second spot) , Kyrie was very popular in Brooklyn, and the interaction between Kyrie and Durant was obviously a dream of many teams. Same situation as the Knicks: Would Kyrie want to wait a year on Durant in Brooklyn? The advantage is that the networks are already a playoff team, and Kyrie could go one step further and wait for Durant to really open the championship window in 2020.
  • Los Angeles Lakers: Perhaps the Lakers are the biggest winners here, as bad as that sounds when the domino who starts all this is a man who loses a year of his career. But think about it: If Kyrie remembers teaming up with a second star in the next season, with K.D. The only place he can do this without any problem is the Lakers, who use LeBron and are supposed to be the "clubhouse leaders" to act for Anthony Davis. A Kyrie-LeBron meeting seems to be a real possibility.
  • Boston Celtics: If the allure for Kyrie leaving Boston was related to Durant, is it more likely that he will just stay in Boston and trade for Anthony Davis?
  • Kawhi Awards: Some people thought Kawhi Leonard was the prize, but he is now. The Clippers, Lakers, and Raptors feel, in the opinion of most of the people I talked to in the league, like the favorites, in no particular order. Remember the Lakers who trade for Davis and land Kawhi as a free agent. Yikes.
  • Houston Rockets: You've already said your entire team is on the table, as Houston is determined to bring a title team to the ground, no matter what it takes. Durant, as will be the case for everyone else, seems to be encouraging Houston to become aggressive now. Does that make for a blockbuster for Houston? Is this the catapult for trading with Chris Paul and / or Clint Capela?

Finally, the Final Moves Forward

On the road, after the Durant injury, after Kawhi had six points behind three minutes before the end of the game – for the Warriors to somehow win the fifth game, Impressive. That was incredible. But can they still win two to win the final? Here are the odds of winning the series starting on Tuesday through Westgate:

  • Warriors: +275
  • Raptors: -350

Even with Durant, the price of the Warriors series was the obvious reason that they just need better now win two instead of three games. But the Raptors are still a big favorite. At our SportsLine projections, the Raptors won the series in 75 percent of the simulations. Toronto looked like the better team for most of the series, and the depth of the Warriors is almost nonexistent. In addition, the defense with Durant is again so vulnerable to Toronto's several playmakers. Boogie Cousins, who was not playable in games 3 and 4, has to take big minutes. The same applies to Quinn Cook. And Steph and Klay have to turn off the lights.

But it is doable.

Game 6 is the last game in the history of the Oracle Arena. This place will rock. Do you really see how the Warriors lose this game at home? If they can do it, it's game 7 now and everything can happen.

"I think the Raptors are too good and too deep for Golden State without Durant," a league scout told CBS Sports on Tuesday. "I was very impressed to win [the Warriors] under these conditions [Game 5] These guys are master, man, but it's just a climb with everything they do, I know the home court is big and everyone talks about it the Oracle goodbye and all that, but I just think Toronto will make it in Game 6.

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