Kevin Durant Will Not Play for Nets vs. Pelicans Because of Thigh Injury

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistApril 19, 2021

Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) leaves the court after a play during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Miami Heat, Sunday, April 18, 2021, in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
Wilfredo Lee/Associated Press

The Brooklyn Nets will be without star Kevin Durant for Tuesday's game against the New Orleans Pelicans because of a thigh contusion.

Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium reported the news, noting Nicolas Claxton and Reggie Perry will also miss the game because of health and safety protocols.

Any injury to the 32-year-old is sure to raise concern in Brooklyn considering he missed significant time with a hamstring issue earlier in the season. He also sat out the entire 2019-20 campaign as he recovered from a ruptured Achilles he suffered during the 2019 NBA Finals as a member of the Golden State Warriors.

When healthy, he is one of the best players of his generation.

Durant is a two-time champion, two-time NBA Finals MVP, four-time scoring champion and 11-time All-Star who also has a Rookie of the Year and league MVP on his resume. He is averaging 27.3 points, 6.7 rebounds and 5.2 assists per game this season.

Losing the Texas product for any time is a significant blow for the Nets, especially with fellow star James Harden currently sidelined by a hamstring injury. That means the team will lean more heavily upon Kyrie Irving in the meantime.

Look for them to carry the offense in such a scenario, while the combination of Jeff Green, Joe Harris, Bruce Brown and Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot sees more playing time.