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KD Names #1 Reason Why he Stayed Healthy This Season

Apr 14, 2024; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Phoenix Suns forward Kevin Durant (35) shares words with Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards (5) after fouling him in the third quarter at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Aging like fine wine, at 35 years old, Kevin Durant wrapped up the 2023-2024 regular season with a total of 75 games played.

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Durant concluded the season with an impressive streak of 46 consecutive games played, during which he logged at least 30 minutes on the court in all but one of those matchups.

he mere seven games he missed this season marked his lowest absence count since the 2018-2019 season with the Golden State Warriors, which preceded his Achilles injury.

So, what was Durant’s secret to staying healthy this season?

In a conversation with Duane Rankin at the Arizona Republic, KD attributed his injury-free season to the absence of players colliding with his legs, stating, “No players flopped into my legs this year. Last two years, I had my teammate flop into me and an opponent flop into me two straight years that caused me to get MCL injuries. If it wasn’t for that, I probably would’ve been out there the same amount of games, but I’m glad nobody flopped into me. Had a couple of nagging injuries, but it was day-to-day type of stuff. I’m grateful for that.”

When asked about his strategy for avoiding such collisions, KD responded, “Just stay away from the crash dummies, you know. The dudes who try to sell calls and don’t mind hurting people by diving on the floor trying to sell a call. I know who those guys are, and I try to stay away from them.”

Supporting Durant’s perspective, his recent minor injuries stemmed from players falling onto his vulnerable leg. The first incident occurred against the Pelicans in January 2022, during Durant’s tenure with the Nets. This collision, resulting in a knee sprain, sidelined him for two months after his teammate Bruce Brown landed on him.

Almost precisely a year later, in January of 2023, Jimmy Butler’s contact led to another two-month absence for Durant after Butler landed on his knee. Durant didn’t return to the court until the first day of March, marking his debut with the Suns.

Overall, as a team, after starting off the season plagued with injuries, the Suns actually managed to stay relatively healthy in the 2nd half. Since the turn of the new year, KD missed just two games, while Devin Booker and Bradley Beal each sat out five games, and Jusuf Nurkic missed four.

The Suns are set to face off against the #3 seeded Minnesota Timberwolves in Round 1 of the playoffs this Saturday. The exact tipoff time is still to be determined.

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