Kevin Durant’s decision to play through his calf injury was emotional, irrational and flat-out foolish.
And it was exactly what fans want to see from their favorite athletes.
It’s why Toronto Raptors fans were chanting Durant’s name when he was carried off.
They are chanting his name here in respect for KD
— Channing Frye (@channingfrye) June 11, 2019 Durant’s leg clearly wasn’t healed from the injury he suffered last month against the Houston Rockets.
He had to have known this. But he risked further injury to go out there and try.
It meant that much to him.
There might have been a handful of jerks jeering and celebrating in the moment when Durant first went down, but they were hushed by Golden State and Toronto players.
And they were drowned out by fans who recognized the moment as time to show respect to a guy who risked his future to give his team a chance to win a title — even though he has two already.
It’s why Steph Curry and Andre Igoudala went with Durant to the locker room after the injury.
Jun 10, 2019: Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35) sits on the court after an apparent injury during the second quarter in game five against the Toronto Raptors of the 2019 NBA Finals at Scotiabank Arena. (Photo: Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports)
He gave his teammates a boost, even though there have been questions about where he might land next year and whether Golden State might be better off without him.
It was an emotional decision. It was an irrational decision. It was a flat-out foolish decision.
And it showed how much the game meant to him.
It’s why Toronto fans were chanting his name.
They recognized that he loved the game as much as they did.
It’s what fans want from their favorite athletes more than anything.
Reach Moore at email@example.com or 602-444-2236. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter @WritingMoore .
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