Kyrie Irving Ruled out for Nets vs. Bulls Because of Facial Injury

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMay 12, 2021

Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving handles the ball during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Boston Celtics, Friday, April 23, 2021, in New York.The Nets won 109-104. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)
Mary Altaffer/Associated Press

Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving exited Tuesday's contest at the Chicago Bulls after taking an inadvertant elbow to the face from Nikola Vucevic two minutes into the third quarter.

The Nets quickly announced he would not return for the remainder of the game with a facial contusion.

SportsCenter @SportsCenter

Kyrie Irving took an inadvertent elbow to the face from Nikola Vucevic and was helped by trainers. He eventually walked to the locker room under his own power. https://t.co/EZoyjHZBJt

Malika Andrews @malika_andrews

Steve Nash said that Kyrie Irving does not have a concussion. He said that he had an X-Ray that was "inconclusive" -- meaning "they need a further scan, I don't know if it's the swelling or what." Irving will have another scan in the morning, Nash said.

Irving has already missed 17 games this season due to a variety of issues. He most recently sat out Brooklyn's 130-113 win over the Indiana Pacers on April 28 with groin soreness. 

The Nets remain in second place in the Eastern Conference despite not having their big three together for most of the year. James Harden has been out of action since April 5 due to a hamstring injury. Kevin Durant missed 23 straight games from Feb. 15-April 5 with a strained hamstring. 

Head coach Steve Nash has done an excellent job in his first season keeping the Nets going amid progloned absences by his top stars. 

Irving has been fantastic this season when he does play. The seven-time All-Star is averaging 27.4 points on 50.4 percent shooting, 6.2 assists and 4.8 rebounds in 51 starts. 

Until Irving is able to return, the Nets will give Landry Shamet and Tyler Johnson extended playing time.