In 2017, Lemar Durant was on pace for his best season ever until Week 7 in Toronto when he made a catch and suffered a knee injury as he was tackled.
He had surgery to repair the damage to his ACL and has been working hard to be ready for the 2018 season.
“I’m doing really well,” says the Simon Fraser grad. “My knee is getting better every day. I just keep progressing as planned so I’m still on schedule to be ready for camp.”
He’s continued his rehab into the off-season in the Vancouver area working with a trainer who has helped him with past injuries. He’s also working out with his big brother Julian.
He’s anxious to be ready for the season but knows he needs to keep himself in check as his rehab progresses.
“I just want to start running and I want to be 100 per cent but I know it takes time,” says the 2015 draft pick. “It’s just that little battle with myself of listening to my body and trying to realize if it’s something I can push through, if there’s a little pain or discomfort, or if it’s time for me to tone it back a bit and just stick with the program.”
Durant celebrates on July 22, 2017 (Photo by David Moll)
He’s been enjoying reaching little milestones along the way.
“The biggest thing for me, I think, is just trying to do some of the biometric stuff, starting to jump and catch myself in an athletic position,” says Durant. “That’s probably the biggest thing right now. I could jog and stuff for a while but I feel like jumping and actually landing and it not hurting is something that’s showing everything is coming along really well.”
Although staying mainly focused on his rehab during the off-season, Durant has managed to make a few day trip to Seattle to see friends and family. His dad’s side of the family live there and he’s been going there since he was a kid.
He also has plans to take a bigger trip in the spring.
“I plan to go to Mexico next month,” says the 25-year-old. “And that will be kind of like my first big thing I do in the off-season because I feel like at that point the basic stuff of my rehab is done so I’ll be able to do some stuff down there by myself and I feel my knee’s made it a long enough way I can take a little break and chill.”
He’s also stayed in touch with some of his teammates and has kept an eye on all the things going on around the CFL during this busy off-season.
“I’ve been paying attention,” admits Durant. “I don’t like look at it religiously but I definitely check in every couple days or few days to just see if any moves are made. And I see there are a lot of things going on already in the league so it’s pretty cool. You know that’s one of the things with the CFL I find cool is that every year could be a different team on top or there’s so much things that go on that it makes the league fun.”
But Durant is one player who won’t be moving to a new team after re-signing with the Red and White in December. The plan is to be ready for training camp in May and pick up where he left off.
You should keep your eye on No. 1 as he takes the next step in his CFL career.
Lemar Durant and Kamar Jorden celebrate a touchdown against Winnipeg on July 7, 2017. (Photo by The Canadian Press/John Woods)