The immediate reaction was a fear of the worst. Twitter doctors everywhere concluded Kevin Durant tore his right Achilles tendon when left Game 5 during the third quarter Wednesday night.
A collective deep breath was then felt from Oracle Arena to NBA Twitter from one single tweet.
Kevin Durant (right calf strain) will not return to tonight's game.— Warriors PR (@WarriorsPR) May 9, 2019
Durant suffered a right calf strain and did not return to the Warriors' 104-99 win over the Rockets, which gave the Dubs a three-games-to-two series lead with Game 6 coming Friday. Spurs forward Rudy Gay, however, had a hunch right away that the injury was to the calf and not Durant's Achilles.
Praying for KD. Although I don’t think it’s what we think. Hopefully— Rudy Gay (@RudyGay) May 9, 2019
It does feel like you got kicked but a strained calf feels the same I hear https://t.co/WTf5TRyYm0— Rudy Gay (@RudyGay) May 9, 2019
Gay, then a member of the Sacramento Kings, tore his left Achilles tendon in January of 2017. He played 57 games the next season for the Spurs, averaging 11.5 points per game, which was the lowest since his rookie year.
Eddie Johnson, who played 17 seasons in the NBA, offered insight into what a calf strain could mean for Durant and the Warriors in the playoffs.
I had 2 grade 2 calf strains in my 17 year NBA career and i was shelved for 4 to 5 weeks both times. Its not a good feeling and its impossible to raise up on your toes to do anything. the best scenario is a grade 1 which is about 7 to 10 days! #KD #GSWvsHOU— Eddie A Johnson (@Jumpshot8) May 9, 2019
Durant strained his calf last season, too. When the injury occurred, he missed three regular-season games over seven days. Coach Steve Kerr reportedly has already ruled his star forward out for Friday's Game 6.
Durant will undergo an MRI for further results on Thursday.