After missing three full games – and parts of a fourth – due to the NBA’s health and safety protocols, Nets star Kevin Durant has been cleared to return. Head coach Steve Nash confirmed that Durant was able to practice today and said he’ll be a “full go” for Saturday’s game against the Warriors, per Malika Andrews of ESPN (Twitter link).
Durant was placed in the league’s COVID-19 protocols last Friday after being in close contact with someone who tested positive for the virus. The two-time Finals MVP has continued to test negative for the coronavirus during the last week, allowing him to get back in Brooklyn’s lineup on Saturday. It will be his first time playing in Golden State since he left the Warriors as a free agent in 2019.
While the Nets will have Durant back, they’ll be without DeAndre Jordan, who will miss the game for personal reasons unrelated to the coronavirus, according to Nash (Twitter link via Andrews). The expectation is that Jordan will continue to be tested for COVID-19 during his absence and will be able to rejoin Brooklyn during its West Coast road trip, which runs through February 21.
With Jordan out, both the Nets and Warriors will be extremely shorthanded at the center position, so we could see plenty of small-ball when the two teams take the court tomorrow.