It’s been a busy day for the Brooklyn Nets.
Shortly before the blockbuster transaction involving eight-time All-Star Kyrie Irving became official on Monday evening, there was promising news that also came out of Barclays Center.
Jacque Vaughn, who declined to comment on the blockbuster trade since it wasn’t official at the time, provided an update on Brooklyn’s lone superstar Kevin Durant.
Durant, who has been out with an MCL sprain in his right knee since Jan. 8, went to see doctors on Monday. The Nets head coach couldn’t provide an update on Durant during his pregame media availability but didn’t rule out a possible update coming after Brooklyn’s game vs. the Los Angeles Clippers. He added that he’s unsure whether Durant will be in attendance for Monday night’s contest.
In his pregame press conference, Vaughn dived into the conversations he has had with Durant since word that his co-star was headed to Dallas, offering just a bit of optimism. According to Brooklyn’s head coach, the 34-year-old was “enthusiastic” about the Nets’ 23-point comeback victory over the Washington Wizards on Saturday night.
“My conversation with Kev basically was based around the game and how our group pulled together to get a win,” Vaughn stated pregame. “He was enthusiastic about that how our guys played how Cam played so our conversations really kind of geared toward that direction and that was really about it.”
The transaction that sent eight-time All-Star Kyrie Irving and veteran forward Markieff Morris to the Dallas Mavericks in exchange for Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith, and a handful of picks has not changed Brooklyn’s expectations and goals for the remainder of the season, Vaughn added.
The other news on the injury front is about point forward Ben Simmons and veteran wing T.J. Warren. Simmons will miss his fifth-straight game on Monday night. Vaughn disclosed that Simmons is healthy to play but wants to save him for the second game of this back-to-back.
“So let’s go through it injury-wise. TJ’s good to go for tonight. Ben is actually available and could go tonight but he is not going because he wouldn’t play in the back to back,” Vaughn said. “So he is highly probable or he probably will go tomorrow night. So that’s how those things works. Seth is out. We will take a look at him probably at the end of the week. He did have an MRI strain, ad, with a d, adductor. So we’ll see what he looks like at the end of the week.”
There is no update on when the two newest Nets -- Dinwiddie and Finney-Smith — will make their debuts on Tuesday night vs. the Phoenix Suns.