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Learning From The Elite: KD’s Fitness On Display

Learning From The Elite: KD’s Fitness On Display NBA FIT

The Golden State Warriors have reached their third successive NBA Finals. And Kevin Durant has been an integral part of the Warriors’ 12-0 playoff run en route to the 2017 Finals, with the forward averaging a playoff career-best 55.6% FG shooting percentage while averaging 25.2 ppg in the postseason. Durant also had, arguably, the most efficient regular season of his career in his first year with the Warriors. Despite missing 20 games due to a Grade II MCL Sprain, Durant shot a career-high 53.7% while playing a career-low 33.4 minutes per game in 2016-17.

Durant was also in the thick of the MVP debate on the back of his consistent and efficient two-way play in the regular season until he was forced to sit out with the injury.

So what makes Durant so great?

 

Obviously, having point guard-ish handles when you are 6-9 helps. Playing alongside three other All-Stars is a huge reason, too. But Durant’s spectacular 2016-17 season is a culmination of a lot of factors coming together, the most important being his work ethic. It’s paid dividends over the course of his decade-long career – 8 x All-Star and 7 x All-NBA selections.

Here are a few videos that showcase Durant’s exemplary training routine and insane dedication to practice over the years:

Training with the King

Seven straight NBA Finals, three-time Finals MVP, four-time league MVP, 12 straight postseason appearances. When it comes to durability and greatness, there are only a few better than LeBron James. After all that, here he is still gunning for another (his fourth) championship in his 12th trip to the Playoffs.

A young Durant picked James’ mind and trained along with him in consecutive off-seasons (2011-12). Weight training, conditioning and on-court ball drills, Durant did it all alongside James. He was just being a sponge, absorbing new techniques from the player, who had won multiple league MVPs.

 


Climbing to the top with the Beast

In his nine-season stint with the Oklahoma City Thunder, Durant never had to look too far to compete with greatness. He had a top 10 league player suiting up with him every night – point guard Russell Westbrook. The duo had been to All-Star Games together and had turned into a deadly 1-2 tandem that spearheaded the Thunder’s chances of a championship each year.

Each had their own set of spectacular abilities they brought to the table. Being the competitor that he is, Durant tried to enhance his explosiveness by training with arguably one of the most athletic and explosive guards ever.

 


Picking the mind of an All-Timer

Champions aren’t only defined by championships. It’s the body of work that they put together that also serves as a measure. Steve Nash is a champion for that reason precisely. He is a two-time league MVP (2005, ’06) and has set a high mark of efficiency –  recording four 50-40-90 seasons.

After an 18-year career, Nash called it quits at the end of the 2013-14 season. Durant wasn’t going to let this opportunity slip. In the 2014 offseason, Durant had morning workouts with Nash for close to a week to pick a few nifty elements from Nash’s game that could help him improve his efficiency.

WATCH: Durant training with Steve Nash

And this is exactly what makes Durant an MVP-caliber player.

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