Golden State Warriors All-Star Kevin Durant had to be helped off the court by a trainer in the second quarter of Game 5 of the NBA Finals Monday night after the team said he sustained an Achilles tendon injury.
The two-time MVP left with 9:46 to go in the quarter. He opened the game hitting his first three-pointers and had 11 points in 12 minutes.
Durant, who had been out since May 8 with a calf strain, returned to the starting lineup with his team down 3-1 in the series against the Toronto Raptors. Durant was injured in Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinals against the Houston Rockets. The Warriors were 6-3 with Durant out of the lineup.
He was dribbling on the right wing and came up lame, falling to the floor and needing help to get back to the Warriors’ bench area. Durant appeared to be favouring the same right calf.
Bob Myers, general manager of the Warriors, fought back tears during a post-game update. He said a MRI scan is needed to determine the full scope of Durant’s injury.
“We felt good about the process. He was cleared to play tonight – that was a collaborative decision … I don’t believe there’s anybody to blame, but I understand this world. And if you have to, you can blame me. I run our basketball operations department,” he said.
WATCH: Warriors, Raptors talk Durant injury
“Kevin Durant loves to play basketball and the people who questioned whether he wanted to get back to this team were wrong.”
Thompson said the team will be thinking of Durant going forward, and noted Durant’s injury makes Monday’s win bittersweet.
“To be honest, it’s very deflating. It’s hard to even celebrate this win,” he told reporters.
Fans at Scotiabank Arena were quieted by Raptors players after they began to cheer when Durant hit the ground. By the time he was walked off into the tunnel, a “K-D” supportive chant was in full force.
—With files from The Canadian Press