The Oklahoma City Thunder will be without their biggest star for at least a week. One day after straining his hamstring right before halftime of OKC's road game against the Washington Wizards, Kevin Durant has been listed as out for the next 7-10 days.
The team made the announcement Wednesday on its official website:
Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant underwent a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) today that confirmed he has a strained left hamstring that he sustained during the second quarter of last night’s 125-101 victory at Washington, the team announced today. Durant will be re-evaluated in 7-10 days at which time a further update will be provided.
You can take a look at the play that caused the injury here:
Durant described the play and his mindset to media after the game. From Royce Young of ESPN.com:
"After that foul, I came down a little awkward and landed on it a little harder than I wanted to, and it pulled," Durant said after the game. [...]
"Whenever I feel right, whenever I feel ready to play again, that's when I'll play," Durant said. "It was a long process of me getting back, and to get hurt again is unfortunate, but whenever I'm ready to play again, I'll play.
"It's unfortunate, but it's a part of the game. Can't hang my head. Just got to work to get back. I've been here before. It's just a small injury, but I've been here before. I ain't going to quit. I'm not going to give up. I'm not going to be upset. It's just a part of the game."
The hamstring strain came as a blow to the Thunder not just due to the impact it will have in the short term, but for the worry that Durant will suffer more nagging injuries similar to the persistent foot issues that limited him to just 27 games last season. It's obviously too early to know how long Durant will be out, and any fears over his long-term availability are somewhat irrational, but it's nevertheless a concern.
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The good news for the 5-3 Thunder is that they should be able to weather Durant's absence over the next 10 days. They are set to face the Philadelphia 76ers (Friday) and Boston Celtics (Sunday) at home, the Memphis Grizzlies on the road (Monday), and the New Orleans Pelicans (November 18) and New York Knicks (November 20) back at home. None of those teams currently holds a record over .500.
Plus, Durant's injury and the passing of his only visit to D.C. this season should end some of the hubbub surrounding his pending free agency. At least the basketball world has something else to focus on when it comes to one of the few clear superstars of this era.
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