Kevin Durant injury update: Nets superstar expected to miss four-to-six weeks with MCL sprain

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Written By Nick Metallinos

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Kevin Durant (Brooklyn Nets)
(NBA Getty Images)

The Nets will be without superstar Kevin Durant for the foreseeable future.

An MRI on Durant’s left knee revealed a sprained medial collateral ligament (MCL), the team announced on Jan. 16.

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

Durant suffered the injury midway through the second quarter of a game against the Pelicans when Bruce Brown fell back into his left knee trying to defend a fast break situation. The Nets announced shortly after that he would not return to the game.

Kevin Durant is out for the remainder of tonight’s game due to a left knee sprain.

— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) January 16, 2022

Durant has been playing at an MVP level for Brooklyn this season, who have had to counter the initial loss and then part-time availability of point guard Kyrie Irving. Through 35 games, Durant is averaging 29.7 points, 7.5 rebounds and 5.9 assists.

The Nets were in third place in the Eastern Conference heading into the game with the Pelicans but are just 4-6 in their past 10 games. Since it has been assembled, Brooklyn has had its Big Three of Durant, Harden and Irving available together for just 16 games, but they are 13-3 in those games.

What’s next for Durant? Here’s everything we know about his injury and the latest news on how long he may be out. 

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What is Kevin Durant’s injury?

Durant’s injury is a sprained MCL in his left knee.

In 2017, a collision with Zaza Pachulia caused Durant to suffer a Grade 2 MCL sprain in his left knee, sidelining him for 19 games. 

Here’s the video of the similar injury to Kevin Durant’s left knee in 2017. Obviously, that one looked worse than tonight’s.

Durant suffered a Grade 2 MCL sprain and a tibial bone bruise, missing 19 games and over a month in 2017.pic.twitter.com/GZ2zZeA5BS https://t.co/Z8Djlu1Lqy

— Billy Reinhardt (@BillyReinhardt) January 16, 2022

How long will Kevin Durant be out?

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, “there’s optimism” that Durant’s timetable for rehab and recovery is four-to-six weeks.

The length of time holds a direct correlation to the severity of the sprain.

In the five weeks following the announcement of Durant’s injury, the Nets are scheduled to play 20 games, with 13 coming on the road. Of them, Kyrie Irving will be available to play in all but one (at Knicks).

Nets schedule 2021-22

Date Opponent Time (ET) National TV Result
Jan. 17 at Cavaliers 3:00 p.m. L, 114-107
Jan. 19 at Wizards 7:00 p.m. W, 119-118
Jan. 21 at Spurs 8:30 p.m. W, 117-102
Jan. 23 at Timberwolves  8:00 p.m. L, 136-125
Jan. 25 vs. Lakers 7:30 p.m. TNT L, 106-96
Jan. 26 vs. Nuggets 7:30 p.m. L, 124-118
Jan. 29 at Warriors 8:30 p.m. ABC  
Feb. 1 at Suns 10:00 p.m. TNT  
Feb. 2 vs. Kings 10:00 p.m.  
Feb. 4 at Jazz 9:00 p.m.  
Feb. 6 at Nuggets 3:30 p.m.  
Feb. 8 vs. Celtics 7:30 p.m. TNT  
Feb. 10 at Wizards 7:00 p.m.  
Feb. 12 at Heat 8:00 p.m.  
Feb. 14 vs. Kings 7:30 p.m.  
Feb. 16 at Knicks 7:30 p.m. ESPN  
Feb. 17 vs. Wizards 7:30 p.m.  

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