2:39pm: Irving is considering treatment options – including surgery – and will make a decision within the next few days, according to Malika Andrews and Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. The expectation in Brooklyn over the past few days is that Irving will miss the rest of the season, sources tell Charania.
2:09pm: Nets point guard Kyrie Irving, who visited a specialist this week to get another opinion on his troublesome right shoulder, will likely undergo a procedure on that shoulder and miss an “extended period of time,” league sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link).
Irving, who signed a big-money-, four-year contract with the Nets last summer, has been limited to just 20 games in his first season with the club, primarily due to shoulder issues. He has been his usual productive self when he has been healthy, averaging 27.4 PPG, 6.4 APG, and 5.2 RPG with a shooting line of .478/.394/.922.
Although Charania’s report doesn’t provide specifics on Irving’s recovery timeline, it may be time to start wondering how much more he’ll actually contribute to the Nets this season. With Kevin Durant confirming he won’t play this season, Brooklyn isn’t a legit championship contender in 2019/20, so the team won’t want to rush Irving back.
At the very least, it seems likely he’ll miss the Nets’ second game in Boston on March 3, depriving Celtics fans of the opportunity to welcome him back this season following his free agency departure.
Regardless of when Irving is able to return to action, the 25-28 Nets, who currently rank seventh in the East, are in position to clinch a playoff spot. The team has a 17-16 record in games without Irving so far this season.