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Kawhi Leonard wishes Kevin Durant well amid ‘devastating’ injury

Kawhi Leonard expressed his heartfelt sympathies for Kevin Durant after the superstar suffered an apparent Achilles injury during the Golden State Warriors’ 106-105 victory over the Toronto Raptors in Game 5 of the NBA Finals.

Durant, making an appearance in a game for the first time in over a month due to a calf strain, went down with the new injury at the 9:46 point of the second quarter.

Leonard entered his first season in Toronto coming off a 2017-18 campaign with the Spurs where he played in only nine games while dealing with a nagging quadriceps tendinopathy condition, which inspired the Raptors to exercise extreme caution with the star. In his postgame comments, Leonard noted how his experiences with injury made Durant’s “devastating” setback relatable.

“It’s devastating. You work so hard to get to this point, you know, these are the last games,” Leonard said, as transcribed by Bleacher Report. “You see he tried to come out and push himself, but obviously he tried to do a move and I feel bad for him. I’ve been in that situation before. I hope he has a speedy recovery and just gets healthy and hope that he’s going to be OK mentally, just throughout the whole rehab process.

“Like I said before, we work so hard to either play in a Finals or just play in the NBA, and you know, when you’re not playing, you know, it’s hard to wrap your [mind] around it. I’m pretty sure he’s going to attack each day, you know, and get better and come back strong.”

The extent of Durant’s injury remains unclear, but the initial prognosis is not good, as it’s believed he sustained a torn Achilles. If an MRI scheduled for Tuesday confirms as much, Durant could conceivably miss the entire 2019-20 NBA season, a nightmare scenario with the star set to enter free agency in a few weeks.