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Kevin Durant's Knee Injury Diagnosed as MCL Sprain; Nets Star Out at Least 2 Weeks

Doric SamJanuary 9, 2023

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - JANUARY 04: Kevin Durant #7 of the Brooklyn Nets dribbles against the Chicago Bulls during the first half at United Center on January 04, 2023 in Chicago, Illinois. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Brooklyn Nets star forward Kevin Durant is going to miss some time.

The superstar forward has been diagnosed with an isolated MCL sprain in his right knee, according to the team, and will be reevaluated two weeks from now.

There is optimism that Durant's injury isn't too serious:

Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn

While Kevin Durant did miss six weeks with a left MCL sprain a season ago, there's optimism that this is a less severe injury unlikely to cost him more than a month on the sidelines, sources tell ESPN. <a href="https://t.co/Dd5jU6bZkd">https://t.co/Dd5jU6bZkd</a>

The 34-year-old exited the game against the Miami Heat on Jan. 8 with a right knee injury after Heat forward Jimmy Butler fell into his leg. He had initially attempted to play before going back to the locker room.

Nets head coach Jacque Vaughn told reporters that Durant would undergo an MRI.

The 12-time All-Star is in the middle of an MVP-caliber season with averages of 29.7 points, 6.7 rebounds and 5.3 assists while shooting a career-high 55.9 percent from the field.

However, Durant has struggled to stay healthy in recent seasons. He hasn't played 60 games or more since 2018-19, when he tore his Achilles in the NBA Finals. He missed the entirety of the following year and sat out for extended periods in each of the last two seasons.

When healthy, he makes the Nets a legitimate title contender in the competitive Eastern Conference. Any absence by the two-time NBA champion would be detrimental to Brooklyn's hopes to maintain its status as one of the elite teams in the league.

While Durant is out, the onus will be on Kyrie Irving to increase his production as the primary offensive option. Players such as Ben Simmons, Nic Claxton and Seth Curry will also have to step up while he's sidelined.