Skip navigation
Favorites
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

Wizards owner Ted Leonsis: ‘Why is everyone so positive – Kevin Durant has the same injury as John Wall and is older’

Washington Wizards v Golden State Warriors

OAKLAND, CA - OCTOBER 27: John Wall #2 of the Washington Wizards shoots over Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors during their NBA basket ball game at ORACLE Arena on October 27, 2017 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Getty Images

Kevin Durant, now 31, is out with a torn Achilles. The Nets owe him $164,255,700 over the next four years.

John Wall, now 29, is out with a torn Achilles. The Wizards owe him $171,131,520 over the next four years.

Yet, Brooklyn is viewed to have a bright future in large part due to Durant. Washington is viewed to have a grim outlook in large part due to Wall.

Wizards owner Ted Leonsis called out the dichotomy.

Leonsis on The Habershow:

Why is everyone so positive – Kevin Durant has the same injury as John Wall and is older.

Nobody should be positive about either player after their devastating injuries. There was real risk giving Durant a max contract this summer.

But there’s more optimism around Durant than Wall for two main reasons:

1. Durant was better than Wall before getting hurt. Wall showed major signs of decline before getting sidelined last season. Perhaps, that was health-related. But his lackluster production can’t just be swept under the rug. Even if Wall’s slippage were totally health-related, his pre-injury form was well below Durant’s. When Durant went down, he could make a case as the NBA’s very best player. The reasonable expectation should be both players declining from their pre-injury forms, but Durant is declining from a far higher peak.

2. Durant is an elite shooter – a skill that should be less adversely affected by his injury. Wall relies far more on burst and explosion, traits that could be significantly compromised. Loss of athleticism would hinder both players. Given their styles of play, it’d like hurt Wall more.