OAKLAND – Golden State Warriors star Kevin Durant is not yet ready to resume on-court work and will be re-evaluated in a week, the team announced Thursday, shortly before Game 2 of the NBA Western Conference finals against the Portland Trail Blazers.
That timeline would put Durant, who is recovering from a right calf strain, out through at least Game 5, which is set — if necessary — for Wednesday in Oakland. If needed, Game 6 is scheduled for Friday, May 24 in Portland. The Warriors rallied to win Game 2, 114-111, to take a 2-0 series lead.
The team’s update said Durant has shown “good progress,” but head coach Steve Kerr told reporters after the game Thursday night that the injury is more significant than they first suspected.
“He has made progress, but it’s a little more serious than we thought at the very beginning,” said Kerr, who told ESPN’s Doris Burke earlier in the day that Durant would miss Games 3 and 4, both in Portland. “We’ll see where it all goes, but he’s in there all day long getting treatment. He’s done a great job of committing himself to that process.
“…Hopefully he’ll be back at some point, and we’ll just wait and see.”
Durant was injured in Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinal series against the Houston Rockets. He missed Golden State’s clinching win in Game 6, then sat out the Warriors’ Game 1 victory in the Western Conference finals vs. Portland on Tuesday.
Even though Durant won the NBA Finals MVP each of the past two seasons, Golden State has 29 wins in its past 30 games when Durant was absent and Stephen Curry played.
Durant is averaging 34.2 points, 5.2 rebounds and 4.9 assists in the postseason after averaging 26, 6.4 and 5.9, respectively, during the regular season.
The Warriors also announced that center DeMarcus Cousins, out with a torn left quad muscle, has been cleared to resume on-court workouts but is not ready for live action. He also will be re-evaluated in a week, the club said.
Cousins has missed 11 games since sustaining the injury April 15 against the Los Angeles Clippers in his second career playoff game. He averaged 16.3 points, 8.2 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game in 30 appearances during the regular season.
–Field Level Media