The Nets announced Sunday morning that an MRI reveals Kevin Durant has a “sprained medial collateral” — MCL — of his left knee. The Nets added that the injury will require a “period of rehabilitation” rather than surgery. Here’s the announcement...
Following an MRI this morning, Kevin Durant was diagnosed with a sprained medial collateral of the left knee. Durant is expected to return to full strength following a period of rehabilitation. Updates regarding his return will be provided as appropriate.— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) January 16, 2022
While the Nets did not provide a timetable on KD’s return, Adrian Wojnarowski said the NBA’s leading scorer will likely be out four to six weeks.
There’s optimism within Nets that will be a four-to-six week rehab and return for Kevin Durant, sources tell ESPN. https://t.co/xKYtu0l4VL— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 16, 2022
Later, Woj wrote...
Durant underwent imaging on Sunday morning after Saturday night’s injury, and a realistic benchmark for Durant could be a return coming out of the All-Star break that ends on Feb. 24, sources said...
There was relief around the Nets that the injury wasn’t more serious, and hopefulness that he will make a full return to health in plenty of time for the playoffs.
The 33-year-old Durant was injured in the second quarter of the Nets-Pelicans game when Herbert Jones of New Orleans inadvertently pushed Bruce Brown into a knee-on-knee collision with Durant, buckling Durant’s left knee. Here’s video of the incident...
KD limped to the locker room after an apparent knee injury.— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) January 16, 2022
Hope he's ok pic.twitter.com/SiXVMjzI90
Durant’s rehab means the Nets won’t have their “Big Three” available until late February or early March. Assuming Kyrie Irving won’t get vaccinated and/or New York City doesn’t change its mandate on indoor venues, Brooklyn will likely have to rely even more heavily on James Harden, particularly at home. Durant and Harden have been in the top three in minutes played all season long.
As Anthony Puccio tweets, there will be limited opportunities for the “Big Three” to play before the post-season using Woj’s benchmark of February 24, the end of All-Star Break...
Tough blow for a team that’s looking for continuity and chemistry amid a part-time season for Kyrie.— Anthony Puccio (@APOOCH) January 16, 2022
Assuming KD returns after the All-Star break, the Big 3 (Kyrie) can play in 8 of 23 to close out the season.
Means we’d see the Big 3 for a max 10 games before playoffs.
The injury could also take Durant out of the All-Star Game on February 20 in Cleveland, roughly five weeks away. He is the East’s leading vote-getter.
MCL injuries do not normally require surgery unless it’s accompanied by other knee-related issues. There’s no indication whatsoever in the Nets announcement that Durant will go under the knife.
The Nets are traveling to Cleveland Sunday for their game with the Cavs Monday night.
- Brooklyn Nets say Kevin Durant diagnosed with sprained MCL - Adrian Wojnarowski - ESPN
- Kevin Durant injured: How the Brooklyn Nets star’s knee sprain impacts the Eastern Conference playoff chase - Kevin Pelton - ESPN+
- Nets avoid the worst with Kevin Durant’s knee injury - Greg Joyce - New York Post
- Kevin Durant diagnosed with sprained MCL, Nets expect full recovery after rehab period - New York Daily News
- Durant has sprained knee ligament, no timetable for return - AP
- What Kevin Durant’s MCL sprain means for the Nets, the big three and their season - Alec Schiffer - The Athletic
- Kevin Durant injury update: Nets star sprains MCL in left knee; optimism he returns in 4-6 weeks, per report - Michael Kaskey-Blomain - CBS Sports
- Kevin Durant out with sprained MCL, reportedly could be back in 4-6 weeks - John Healy - WFAN