Nets' Kyrie Irving Out vs. Mavs Due to Shoulder Injury Recovery

Blake SchusterSenior Analyst IIFebruary 27, 2021

Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) takes the ball up court during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game against the Orlando Magic, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
Kathy Willens/Associated Press

Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving will not play in Saturday's game against the Dallas Mavericks.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium, the reason for his absence is listed as "right shoulder injury recovery." Irving had arthroscopic surgery on his shoulder last year.

More than likely, Nets head coach Steve Nash is sitting the 28-year-old star to get him some rest.

Irving last missed a game on Feb. 16 with lower back tightness. Through 24 games, Irving is averaging 27.4 points, 5.9 assists and 4.7 rebounds.

The All-Star guard has taken a little bit more of a hands-off approach in the backcourt, ceding primary ball-handling duties to James Harden as the Big Three of Harden, Irving and Kevin Durant continue to experiment on the floor. 

Irving will be difficult to replace in the lineup Saturday. In the 10 games he has missed this season for varying reasons, the Nets are 6-4.

Durant will also be out Saturday and through the March 7 All-Star Game, meaning Harden will be the lone Big Three member in the lineup against Dallas.

Look for Nash to provide more playing time to the likes of Bruce Brown, Landry Shamet and Tyler Johnson on Saturday.

Even with Durant being on the shelf recently, the Nets are riding an eight-game winning streak, and they are second in the Eastern Conference at 22-12.

The Nets have enough talent to win without Irving, but it will be a significant challenge against a Mavs team led by MVP candidate Luka Doncic.