National Basketball Association star Kevin Love opens up about panic attacks


He reveals that it was a panic attack that led to his abrupt departure from the November 5th game against the Atlanta Hawks.

Suffering for years in silence, Kevin Love has opened up about his struggles with mental health.

In the short time I've been meeting with the therapist, I've seen the power of saying things out loud in a setting like that. That's why I didn't realize until after I finished reading Love's Players' Tribune piece that tears were streaming down my face.

"Looking back now I know I could have really benefited from having someone to talk to over the years", Love wrote. Even if it's just somebody can look at it like, "He goes through it and he's still out there being successful and doing this", I'm OK with that'.

"This just one more example of the willingness to kind of go above and beyond and say not only am I going to work on my physical engine, I'm going to work on my mental one as well", said Dr. Erin Ayala, Premier Sport Psychology, PLLC.

That means that when Love is back from his injury, there should be a contingency plan for the Cavaliers should Love suffer from an attack (all the time they have had to play without Love only helps their knowledge of how to deal with a sudden absence) and a realization that he could leave a game in the postseason because of those attacks.

You can not tell what someone else is going through just by looking at them; mental health is a concern for rich and poor, male and female, healthy and sickly.

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In the worst few moments sitting on the bench disorientated, and later while in the team training room, Love remembers feeling like his body was telling him, "You're going to die". I nodded, but I didn't hear much of what he said.

Shout out to Kevin Love for that. Nor did most people outside of the organization.

On the other hand, not everyone is completely understanding of mental-health issues - especially in professional sports, which Love examines in his article.

Personally, I have never head a panic attack but I don't need to have one to know that it sounds awful. "I thought that was great".

"In the National Basketball Association, you have trained professionals to fine-tune your life in so many areas". I gotta stop right here and just say: I'm the last person who'd have thought I'd be seeing a therapist.

"I want to make it clear that I don't have things figured out about all of this", he added.

"I had buried those emotions since her passing and said to myself, I have to focus on basketball". Not once have I endured a panic attack at an arena or while covering a lottery, draft or all-star game. But I didn't share - not to my family, not to my best friends, not in public.