Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving was sidelined in April after a pair of screws in his left knee from a previous injury became infected.
On Thursday, Irving went through one-on-one drills with his trainer in Las Vegas and detailed the extent of his injury and rehab — something that apparently could have been much worse than it was.
The Celtics discovered the bacterial infection on the metal wiring and screws in his left patella, which was a result of the fracture he suffered in the 2015 NBA Finals. The infection was only found when he had surgery in March to remove the tension wire in his knee.
That injury, he told Ohm Yongmisuk of ESPN, could have developed into a staph infection had they not treated it early enough. That treatment, he said, forced him to have a catheter inserted into a vein going into his heart.
“I mean, you ask anybody with an infection, they will probably try to downplay it,” Irving told ESPN. “It’s a personal thing because your body is going through it. I was fighting an infection in a specific place in your body where you can’t necessarily reach with your hands. You got to go in there and kind of see what’s going on, and what happened for me was, the metal wiring and the screws that I had in there, the infection was on that, so I had to remove that and then be on antibiotics for about two months.
“It could have evolved to staph, but good thing we caught it early. I am glad that is done. That was a long, long f—ing two months.”
Irving, while watching the USA Basketball men’s national team practice in Las Vegas, said he is already looking forward to next season. With him making progress on his rehab, Irving told ESPN that he’d be “easily” ready to go for training camp in the fall.
And even though he said it’s been a rigorous process coming back from the infection, Irving thinks he’ll be much better off for it.
“This has probably one of the first summers in the last seven years where I have actually had time to develop and work on things that I want to improve on,” Irving told ESPN. “I have been playing USA every summer or I was hurt one summer or we are coming off a championship.
“It has been a grind, and it kind of caught up with me last season, and now getting a chance to really take my time and focus on my body this summer.”
More from Yahoo Sports:
• LeBron Jr.’s basketball game cancelled amid security concerns
• Red Sox manager ticked at Orioles’ postponing game Boston led 5-0
• Kevin Durant’s latest social media feud: McCollum called him soft
• Conor McGregor reaches plea deal in NYC assault case