Clippers center DeAndre Jordan is in his 10th NBA season. He played 360 straight games before pneumonia knocked him out a couple years ago. He rested a few more games that season and another last season, but he played every Clippers games this season.
Jordan sat with a sprained left ankle suffered Thursday. That’s generally not a big deal. Minor injuries happen, and the Clippers beat the Kings in both games.
But, for Jordan, it was noteworthy.
It marked the first game Jordan missed because of injury in his 10-year career, all with the Clippers.
We should celebrate Jordan’s durability more than we do. It’s a huge part of his value. Not only does he play nearly every game, he plays major minutes. The Clippers get more time of top-shelf production from their center than other teams that have to rely on lesser backups for longer.
It’s a little backward this comes up only when Jordan gets hurt. But so it goes.
His streak started after another bout of pneumonia, and he missed games earlier in his career before he was a rotation lock. But Jordan worked his way into All-NBA status, and he’s obviously in great shape. That combined with some luck has made him a healthy outlier.