The injury bug just keeps biting Nets star Kevin Durant.
During the first quarter of Sunday’s game between Brooklyn and Miami, Durant suffered a left thigh contusion and was ruled out for the rest of the contest. Durant’s thigh appeared to make contact with Trevor Ariza’s knee on a drive to the basket, leaving the 11-time All-Star in obvious pain.
Durant eventually exited the game and was seen on the sideline speaking with a team trainer. He limped back to the locker room, and the Nets later announced he would not return.
In just four minutes of action, Durant scored eight points on 3-of-3 shooting from the field. Entering Sunday’s game, he was averaging 28.1 points, 7.0 rebounds and 5.4 assists while shooting 53.9 percent from the field and 45.4 percent on 3-pointers.
The 32-year-old has struggled with injury problems throughout the 2020-21 season, most notably missing nearly two months with a hamstring strain.
“We’re kind of used to it now,” Nets coach Steve Nash said during an in-game interview with ESPN’s Israel Gutierrez. “We’ve had a lot thrown at us, different lineups. We miss Kevin dearly, but we’ve been able to scrap and adapt this year, and other guys will get an opportunity.”
Brooklyn was already missing James Harden, who is dealing with his own hamstring issue and has not played since April 5. The Nets’ “Big Three” of Durant, Harden and Kyrie Irving has only played in seven total games together this season.