Florida Gators star forward Keyontae Johnson collapsed on the court during Saturday's game against the Florida State Seminoles. He was placed on a stretcher and taken from the court and to a Tallahassee hospital. He is reportedly in critical but stable condition.
The incident occurred mere minutes into Saturday's game. Johnson was involved in an alley-oop play before the game stopped for a media timeout. He was celebrating with his teammates and walking to the sidelines when he collapsed. The cameras cut away from the court while the ESPNU broadcasters provided the update. When the timeout ended, Johnson remained on the court while personnel tended to him.
Here is the sequence for Keyontae Johnson just before his collapse. Before his great alley-pop dunk, he had a weak, awkward-looking corner 3 attempt. Early sign of symptoms? After his dunk, his celebration with teammates seemed somewhat subdued after a great play and great start. pic.twitter.com/DNW3me5oDg— Jonathan Arnholz (@JArnholz) December 12, 2020
"We had an extended delay as [Keyontae] went down. Our thoughts are with Key. Love you, man," the Gators tweeted. The team also confirmed that Johnson had gone to a local hospital for further evaluation. His teammates cried and hugged each other during the timeout before returning to the court for the remainder of the game. University of Florida officials later told Sports Illustrated that Johnson was in critical but stable condition.
The Gators were up 11-3 after Johnson's alley-oop slam dunk, but ESPN reports that both teams seemed rattled after his collapse. The Seminoles proceeded to score the next seven points to bring the game within one. Meanwhile, Florida State's social media account said that their "thoughts and prayers" are with Johnson and the Florida basketball team.
When Johnson collapsed on the court, many fans weighed in and said that the game needed to come to an early end. Viewers saw the effect on his teammates and the number of tears being shed by the athletes. These fans said that it was a poor choice to continue with the game and called for a postponement. Many also said that they would pray for Johnson to make a full recovery.
A member of the All-SEC team during his sophomore season, Johnson entered the 2020-21 campaign facing major expectations. He earned SEC Preseason Player of the Year honors and created conversations about his NBA potential. Johnson continued to impress during the first three games of the season while averaging 19.7 points per game for the undefeated Gators.