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Nets’ Kevin Durant Not Traveling, Could Sit Multiple Games



Kevin Durant

Brooklyn Nets superstar forward Kevin Durant is not traveling with the team and may sit out multiple games for contact-tracing protocols, according to ESPN’s Malika Andrews and Adrian Wojnarowski.

Durant was pulled out of the lineup in the pregame and third quarter of the Nets game against the Toronto Raptors on Friday after Durant came into contact with an associate on Friday who tested positive for the coronavirus Friday night.

The Nets informed the league office of the individual’s inconclusive test on Friday afternoon. The league instructed the team to pull Durant out of pregame warmups. Durant left the floor, but the NBA then cleared him to return to the bench prior to the start of the first quarter.

Durant left the court for the final time during the third quarter, and would finish after playing 19 minutes in the game.

“Durant was initially held out of the game while that result was being reviewed,” the NBA said in an official statement. “Under the league’s health and safety protocols, we do not require a player to be quarantined until a close contact has a confirmed positive test.”

“I don’t understand the whole thing where he couldn’t play, then he came on the court, then they took him back,” Nets guard James Harden said. “There’s just a lot going on. There’s too much going on. It’s kind of overwhelming. We’re in the midst of a tough game, and these games are going to add up, especially if we’re talking about playoff seeding … to catch a rhythm. It’s overwhelming. It’s frustrating.”

“[Durant] feels the same way. Especially with him already having it and we get tested every single day. He’s been negative. So, I don’t understand what the problem is. The game should’ve been postponed, I feel like. If we’re talking about contact tracing. He was around all of us. So I don’t understand why he wasn’t allowed to play, then allowed to play, then taken back off the court. If that was the case, we should’ve postponed the game.”

“I probably got a little distracted thinking about what it means long-term for our team,” Nets head coach Steve Nash said. “We’ve already been playing guys a lot of minutes and if Kevin is not playing, are we gonna run the remaining guys too many minutes? So maybe I got a little distracted by the big picture.”

Anthony DiMoro is the creator of Sports Rants and the CEO of Elite Rank Media. He is a former Contributor for Forbes and the Huffington Post where he covered sports, social media, and SEO. Anthony formerly hosted the 'Forbes SportsMoney Podcast'.