On Wednesday, Kevin Durant revealed he suffered a torn Achilles in Game 5 of the NBA Finals that he has since undergone surgery for. It's unknown how long the injury will sideline him for, but ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that it is expected to keep him out for the entire 2019-20 season.
Having missed all but nine games of last season due to a quadriceps injury, Kawhi Leonard knows what lies ahead for the 10-time All-Star and offered some advice based on what he went through.
"Just from my own experience, I can talk from what I've been through," Leonard said after practice on Wednesday. "Like I said, we work so hard to get to this point and the game gets taken away from you, especially with leg injuries and things like that, you're not really able to run or do anything on the floor. So you really just have to change your mindset on things and try to attack each day of getting better and just know that you're going to play again one day.
"You want to come back as the player that you were. Make sure you come back when you feel healthy and you feel good enough that you feel confident enough in yourself to go back out there on the floor. Know that that day will come. And just like I said, attack each day.
"That's your assignment - to get back to the thing that you love to do."
While they suffered different injuries, Leonard's play this season is an encouraging sign for Durant. Leonard missed 22 games, mostly due to "load management," but he came back better than ever, averaging a career-best 26.6 points to go along with 7.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists.
Leonard has been even more dominant in these playoffs, putting together one of the best runs we've ever seen.
Durant will be looking to do the same, whether he returns in 2019-20 or 2020-21.