Golden State Warriors star Kevin Durant had an early exit from their game against the Phoenix Suns on Sunday night after he injured his right ankle.
Durant, while attempting to pass the ball from near the block midway through the fourth quarter, landed awkwardly and twisted his right ankle on DeAndre Ayton’s foot before falling to the ground. Durant stood up and walked off the floor to the locker room under his own power, seemingly moving fine as he did so.
Durant left with 25 points on the night, shooting 9-of-17 from the field.
He did not return, and the Warriors later described Durant’s injury as a “right ankle contusion.”
Kevin Durant (right ankle contusion) will not return to tonight's game.— Warriors PR (@WarriorsPR) March 11, 2019
Warriors coach Steve Kerr said after the game that he had spoken to Durant about the injury, and that it “doesn’t appear to be serious,” via Anthony Slater of The Athletic.
Suns surge ahead late to beat Warriors
While they were tied when Durant went down, the Suns surged ahead in the waning minutes. Phoenix outscored Golden State 18-10 in the final five minutes to take the 115-111 win at Oracle Arena in Oakland — the team’s fourth win in five games. It also snapped an 18-game losing streak to the Warriors and marked the Suns’ first win in Oakland since 2014.
Devin Booker led the Suns with a near-triple-double with 37 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds. Seventeen of Booker’s points came in the fourth quarter, too. Kelly Oubre finished with 22 points, and Ayton added 18 points and nine rebounds.
While the game obviously didn’t end in his favor, Kerr had nothing but praise for the Suns, who were playing the second night in a row after falling to the Trail Blazers in Portland on Saturday.
“They’ve been through a tough season, and they’ve played really well lately,” Kerr said. “We knew they weren’t going to be a pushover. Think about what they did. They came from Portland last night, lost an hour and started a game at 5:30 — barely legal by NBA standards to even have a back-to-back like that.
“They came in and kicked our butts, so good moment for them. Good game for them. I’m happy for them. I know the frustration they felt all year, and it was the right outcome. They beat the crap out of us.”
Steve Kerr adds some more context to a brutal Warriors loss to 16-52 Suns: Phoenix had a late tip in Portland last night, lost an hour because of daylight savings, forced into an early 5:30 pm tip tonight, fell down 16, came back to beat Warriors pic.twitter.com/ncRtyuF5Ql— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) March 11, 2019
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