Tiger Woods understood why Kevin Durant was willing to take a risk by playing in the NBA Finals: “Why do we do it? Because we’re competitors,” the golfer said on Tuesday.
Durant had missed more than a month after suffering a calf strain in the previous round of the playoffs but returned to the court with the Golden State Warriors in a must-win situation against the Toronto Raptors.
The 2014 MVP looked great initially in Game 5 on Monday but hurt his Achilles in the second quarter, with reports suggesting he could be set to miss the entirety of next season.
Woods – who won the 2008 U.S. Open despite a serious knee issue that required surgery afer the tournament – empathised with Durant’s “sad” situation.
“As athletes, our job is to make the human body do something it’s never meant to do and do it efficiently and better than anyone else is doing it at the same time,” Woods said at his press conference at this year’s U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.
“Well, things sometimes go awry and we saw it with Kevin. It was sad. As athletes we’ve all been there at the spot when you just know it, that something just went, and can’t move, can’t do much of anything.
“And you see it on his face, how solemn his face went, and he knows it, when things pop, you just know, and I’ve been there.”
If Frank could talk, what stories would he tell? pic.twitter.com/XjlnQXtYxH
— U.S. Open (USGA) (@usopengolf) June 11, 2019
Woods battled injury issues – including troublesome back problems – for many years after his 2008 triumph at Torrey Pines, leading some to doubt he would add to his tally of 14 majors.
However, the American ended an 11-year wait for number 15 at Augusta earlier this year at the Masters.
“I’ve had it to my own Achilles, I’ve had it to my own back, I know what it feels like, it’s an awful feeling and no one can help you, that’s the hard part,” Woods added on Durant.
“Whether he has a procedure going forward or not, or whatever it is, his offseason, what that entails, that’s the hardest part about it is the offseason or the rehab.
“I mean, if he popped it, then that’s six to nine months of rehabbing. That’s what people don’t see, is all those long hours that really do suck.”