There are times when fans say on social media that they think players are soft for participating in load management during the regular season. But the big reason why they do it is so they can lay it all on the line when it matters most—in the playoffs.
Kevin Durant did just that in the Brooklyn Nets’ biggest game of the season. Durant scored 49 points, grabbed 17 rebounds, and had 10 assists in the Game 5 win on Tuesday night at Barclays Center. But perhaps the most impressive thing about it was that he played all 48 minutes.
Now, I’m sure you’re reading this and thinking, "48 minutes isn’t that long. He’s getting paid millions of dollars to run up and down a court." But I wanted to try and feel what it was like to run up and down the court for 48 minutes like Durant did so I ran back and forth in my alley for 48 minutes straight today.
Here is the proof. You could see how much it took out of me just by the sweat dripping down my neck. It was so exhausting I was jogging the slowest you could possibly jog for the last ten minutes.
Update: The next two days after completing this run, it hurt to walk because of how sore my calves were.
@KDTrey5 had a historic performance (49 PTS, 17 REB, 10 AST) & played all 48 minutes of Game 5. I ran back & forth for 48 minutes straight today to (sort of) mimic what it would feel like to play every minute…and it was hard (you can see from the sweat on my neck) #NBA pic.twitter.com/YzONbL66Mj— Ben Fadden (@ben_fadden) June 16, 2021
Yes, I am aware that he didn’t run for 48 minutes straight. There was a halftime to take a break. But it’s also important to note that I was just jogging and didn’t have to defend Giannis Antetokounpo or shoot a basketball with P.J. Tucker in my face. Durant also had to perform like this in front of 16,067 fans without Kylie Irving and an injured James Harden (major props to him for playing 46 minutes on a hurt hamstring).
I challenge you to try running for 48 minutes straight like I did and share your results. I think you’ll come out of it with a newfound appreciation for what Durant pulled off to put the Nets one win away from the Eastern Conference Finals.