This season, in his 15th NBA campaign, LeBron James pushed the boundaries of what most of us thought was possible for a player his age. The 33-year-old at times looked better than he ever had before. He's given fans no reason to expect he's slowing down.
With fitness and health knowledge constantly increasing and the emergence of training and recovery technologies, there's reason to believe we could see a dominant 40-year-old in the NBA someday in the relatively near future. Don't expect that player, however, to be Kevin Durant.
In an interview with ESPN's Chris Haynes, Durant said he could see himself retiring when he's 35. Perhaps that's because that's his jersey number.
"This game, your craft, you have to continue studying it," Durant told ESPN. "No matter how much you enjoy it, nobody wants to be in school that long. I know I don't. At some point, you have to be ready to graduate. Thirty-five, that's just a number in my mind."
Durant's agent and business partner, Rich Kleiman, confirmed to ESPN that Durant has talked about retiring at 35—but that doesn't mean Kleiman necessarily sees it happening.
"I heard him say that, but I'll believe it when it happens," Kleiman said.
As Haynes notes, Durant will soon turn 30 and could sign a five-year deal this summer, as he reportedly plans to opt out of his current deal and become a free agent. That means Durant's next contract could be his last—and he may retire as a Warrior.
Durant said he could see himself being at peace with retiring at the relatively young age of 35.
"Especially if I continue to approach the game the right way every day like I've been doing, hell yeah," he told ESPN. "Hell yeah, I can move on."