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Kevin Durant to miss at least two weeks, maybe a month, following MCL strain diagnosis

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NBA: Brooklyn Nets at New Orleans Pelicans Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant will miss at least two weeks — a minimum of six games — with an isolated sprain of the MCL in his right knee. The Nets issued the medical update on Durant shortly before noon on Monday. Durant was injured in the third quarter of the Nets win over the Heat when Miami’s Jimmy Butler fell into the back of Durant’s knee.

Here’s the Nets release:

Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant has been diagnosed with an isolated MCL sprain of the right knee. The injury occurred during the third quarter of last night’s game at Miami. Durant will be reevaluated in two weeks.

An “isolated” sprain suggests no other soft tissue damage was detected.

Not long after, Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Nets expect KD to miss up to a month.

Brooklyn Nets star forward Kevin Durant is expected to be sidelined for approximately a month, sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on Monday.

The Nets announced Monday that Durant was diagnosed with an isolated MCL sprain of his right knee and will be reevaluated in two weeks.

Durant will start missing games Thursday vs. the Boston Celtics a much anticipated game that will be carried on TNT. The two-week evaluation would come just as Brooklyn is returning home from a Western Conference road trip that has them playing in San Antonio, Phoenix, Utah and Golden State.

The Nets superstar missed 21 games last season after a similar injury to his left knee. In those 21 games, between January 15 and March 3, the Nets were 5-16 including an 11-game losing streak. In discussing the issues that drove him to request a trade, Durant has said the Nets inability to take up more of the slack concerned him.

In the January 2022 medical update, the Nets did not provide a re-evaluation timetable, saying only there would be a “period of rehabilitation.” This time, the medical update was specific on the timetable saying KD would be “re-evaluated in two weeks.”

Adrian Wojnarowski and Brian Lewis both report the Nets do not believe this year’s MCL strain is as bad.

Prior to the update, more than one outlet, including Shams Charania, reported that there was hope inside the HSS Training Center that things would not turn out as badly as last season. The Nets also have built up their bench since then.

Durant has recorded averages of 29.7 points (sixth in the league), 6.7 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 1.5 blocks (ninth in the league) in 36.0 minutes per game (12th in the league), while shooting a career-high 55.9 percent from the field, 37.6 percent from 3-point range and a career-best and league-leading 93.4 percent from the free-throw line.

KD surpassed Dominique Wilkins on the all-time scoring list Sunday night, putting him 14th on the all-time list. In the first half of this season, Durant has passed Alex English, Vince Carter, Kevin Garnett, John Havlicek, Paul Pierce, Tim Duncan as well as Wilkins.