An MRI revealed that Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant suffered a tibial bone bruise and sprained Medial Cruciate Ligament (MCL) in his left knee against the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night. The Warriors have ruled him out indefinitely pending re-evaluation in four weeks.
Injury Update: Kevin Durant suffered a Grade 2 MCL sprain and a tibial bone bruise.— Warriors PR (@WarriorsPR) March 1, 2017
Full details below. pic.twitter.com/t3JkVnMmqa
Durant sustained the injury in the opening minutes of the game, when teammate ZaZa Pachulia fell into his leg. It was originally reported as a hyperextension.
Kevin Durant is out for the rest of the game (hyperextended knee) pic.twitter.com/vJZFcyCDN9— NBA TV (@NBATV) March 1, 2017
After the game, several sources reported that the Warriors intend to sign former Sacramento Kings forward Matt Barnes for the remainder of the season, in anticipation of an extended absence from Durant. The 36-year-old free agent averaged 7.6 points and 5.5 rebounds per game with the Kings, shooting a paltry 38.4 percent from the field.
The Warriors, holders of a league best 50-10 record and a four-game lead over the Spurs for the no. 1 seed, do have some room for error as they await Durant’s return. But Golden State will certainly want Durant back by mid-April for their first round playoff series.
At the time of the injury, Durant, a 4-time NBA scoring leader and former Most Valuable Player, ranked third on the 2017 MVP ladder, behind James Harden of the Houston Rockets and Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Through 59 starts in his inaugural Warriors season, Durant averaged 25.3 points, 8.2 rebounds, and 4.8 assists per game.