AUSTIN, Texas — Last February, Devonte' Graham was traded from the Pelicans to the Spurs. Now, the star guard is hoping to make San Antonio home.
During many of his early days in San Antonio, Graham dealt with a nagging groin injury, which is why he didn't play in the two games at the Moody Center in Austin this past April.
But a few weeks ago, Graham was back in Austin to train with Eric Ferguson, owner and lead specialist of The Continuum Method.
Three years ago, Graham, then with the Hornets, was experiencing significant knee pain. So, his former teammate, PJ Washington, introduced him to Ferguson.
"Eric stepped in and relieved [my knee pain] within two days, two sessions really, and from there on, it was like, 'Boom, we've got a connection,'" Graham said.
Three years later, Graham is finally visiting Ferguson's home shop in North Austin.
"He's kind of like a hidden gem," Graham said when describing Ferguson.
A glowing compliment from a player who almost opted to go under the knife to fix his knee. Instead, Ferguson advised against surgery.
"He flew out to [Charlotte to] see me, and within 48 hours, I was pain free from my knee," Graham said. "It was mind-blowing to me. And anytime I have any problems, [Ferguson] comes, and within 48 hours, it's pretty much gone."
Also gone are Ferguson's flights to work with one of his many pro athlete clients. That's because, at 28, the 5-year NBA veteran who previously spent time in Charlotte and New Orleans is hoping to solidify San Antonio as his new home.
"This is my third team," Graham said. "I want to stay. It's a great city to be in. The fans have been great. We have a chance to do something special, so just growing, man."
Growth under a legendary head coach.
"Nothing but great things to say about Coach Popovich," Graham said. "Coaches you hard, stays on you, holds you accountable. And I think for a young team, that's a good thing."
And despite not playing in Austin last April, Graham said his brief time in the Texas capital was a slam dunk.
"Oh, it was great," Graham said. "It was a great environment."
An environment not too unfamiliar to the former Kansas Jayhawk.
"I never lost to Texas in my four years, so I mean, that's my only good memory that I can say. Pretty good one," Graham said with a smile.
So, another NBA star trains with Ferguson, the neuromuscular specialist located right here in Austin. Hopefully next year, when the Spurs play another pair of home games at the Moody Center, Graham will be healthy enough to compete in front of the Austin crowd.