Making the cut—Dwayne Evans
A look into the life of a NBA hopeful
Position: Small Forward
Hometown: Bolingbrook, IL
High School: Neuqua Valley
Major: Business Administration
Dwayne Evans may only have to aim to the standard 10 feet hoop when making a basket but in his athletic career, Dwayne is relentlessly aiming higher and higher. His dream since starting basketball at the age of 3 has been to play for a professional basketball team. With the support of his family and the drive of achieving his life-long dream, Dwayne has and is doing everything possible to make the cut.
Dwayne graduated from Saint Louis University in 2014 with dreams of making it into the league. During his time in college, he was named first-team all-conference selection two consecutive years in a row (2013 & 2014), played in every game during his career (134), led his team in rebounds all four years in college, was an All-Academic team selection for two consecutive years, and had countless other incredible statistics and accomplishments. Unfortunately, Dwayne was part of the 98.8% of senior collegiate basketball players that were not drafted by a NBA team. But that hasn’t stopped him.
And neither has his first substantial injury. He had surgery to repair a bone spur, patellar tendonosis, and an abundance of scar tissue removed from his knee. Although the process has been a long one, Dwayne has not stopped working. A typical day for Dwayne is now dedicated almost solely to recovery and achieving his dream:
“I wake up, go to physical therapy at Achieve Ortho, then head over to Acceleration for speed/agility/strength training for about 2 hours. Then I try to head over to the gym to either play or get some shots up. I work some recovery time into my schedule after that—usually rolling, stretching, sometimes, the steam room. On some days I coach, so I’ll coach after that, go to my part time job and in the rare instance where there is extra time, I try and fit in a social-life, but that’s not my priority.”
After trying one physical therapy clinic and not seeing the results that he wanted, Dwayne heard about Achieve Orthopedic Rehab Institute from one of his trainers at Acceleration Naperville.
“Finally getting to a clinic that knows exactly how to work with athletes like myself and continuing my training program has helped me get closer and closer to full strength. I expect this kind of specific treatment for my knee combined with strengthening exercises will help me avoid these types of injuries in the future. The staff at Achieve has been nothing short of incredible…they addressed my key trouble areas, how to fix them, and gave me objective measures in which to compare.”
Once Dwayne was well on his way to a full recovery, he was been able to return to his training program at Acceleration Naperville where he was first introduced to sports performance.
“Before [Acceleration], I believed focusing solely on basketball would get me where I wanted to be. I came to find out that as I got older, competition got stronger and faster as well and Acceleration helped me maintain that edge. At this point, making the cut means continuing to train and get healthy to eventually sign a professional basketball contract with a team.”
Finding that balance between training and recovery might be the game-changer that Dwayne needs in order to get drafted by a NBA team. Of course, despite having all the right resources and a committed attitude, making the cut may never happen. Dwayne fully recognizes this and has back-up plans thanks to his college education.
“In the event I do not make a professional team I will have several decisions to make. I am currently studying for the GMAT for Grad school in my free time and have begun networking for possible career opportunities in fields such as marketing, sports business, and finance.”
Lucky for Dwayne, he has spent a lifetime working hard to achieve his dream and that determination will pay off if he pursues a different career path. For now, we look forward to seeing Dwayne make the cut- sporting a NBA jersey and scoring the game-winning basket.