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Reuters

March 29 (The Sports Xchange) - Golden State Warriors star forward Kevin Durant has made "very good progress" in his recovery from a Grade 2 MCL sprain and tibial bone bruise in his left knee, the team announced Wednesday.

Durant, who is four weeks removed from sustaining the injury in a 112-108 loss to the Washington Wizards on Feb. 28, is expected to participate in non-contract basketball drills as he enters the next phase of his recovery.

ESPN reported Wednesday that Durant could return for the final three games of the regular season. Golden State concludes its slate with home contests against the New Orleans Pelicans on April 8, Utah Jazz two nights later and the Los Angeles Lakers on April 12.

"Kevin has made very good progress since suffering the injury four weeks ago in Washington," the Warriors said in a statement. "He has not experienced any setbacks to date and has progressed as well as could be expected. At this point, he is being incorporated into non-contact basketball drills -- shooting, running and jumping -- and the plan is to intensify his level of movement over the next several days, which will include more explosive cutting and lateral maneuvers.

"His eventual return to contact drills and practice will be predicated upon his progress to the increased intensity of his workouts, and a return to game action prior to the end of the regular season remains a possibility. He will be re-evaluated again in the next 7-10 days."

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The Indiana Pacers waived veteran guard Rodney Stuckey, clearing the way for Lance Stephenson to return to the team.

Stephenson, a 6-foot-5, 230-pound free agent swingman, reached an agreement with the Pacers on a three-year, $12 million deal, league sources told ESPN.

Stephenson, 26, spent the first four years of his career with the Pacers before he left for the Charlotte Hornets via free agency in the 2014 offseason. He also had stints with the Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, New Orleans Pelicans and Minnesota Timberwolves.

Stuckey, 30, has been plagued by injuries all season. His departure comes a day after the Pacers announced he would miss four to six weeks with a strained left patellar tendon suffered Sunday.

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The Chicago Bulls recalled guard Cameron Payne from the Windy City Bulls of the NBA Development League.

In Windy City's 101-92 win over the Erie BayHawks on Tuesday night, Payne finished with 20 points, nine assists and five steals in 39 minutes.

Payne, 22, has appeared in 30 games combined this season with Chicago and the Oklahoma City Thunder. He is averaging 5.4 points and 14 minutes in 10 games with the Bulls. (Editing by Steve Keating.)

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