West Team's Kevin Durant of Oklahoma Cit

Kevin Durant turns ankle, leaves game; calls injury a “tweak”

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UPDATE 11:41 pm: Durant left the arena wearing a protective boot on his ankle, but that was primarily for precautionary reasons and he said the injury was not that serious, according Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman.

“Just a little tweak,” he said. “I did it before. Just gotta see how I feel in the morning.”

Durant said he hopes to play Friday in Atlanta for the Thunder. You can bet there will be plenty more medical tests before that happens.

10:54 pm: Kevin Durant — the NBA’s leading scorer at 28.5 per game and current Golden Boy, in case you forgot — turned his ankle badly Wednesday night, forcing him out of the game against the Pacers. He did not return.

There is no word yet on the severity of the injury, but watch the video, it’s not good. That looks like the kind of ankle sprain that has you missing a few games at first glance.

With 2:44 left in the third quarter Durant tried to drive from the left elbow area and Indiana’s Tyler Hansbrough slid over to cover him. Durant stepped on Hansbrough’s foot and twisted his ankle. He stayed in to shoot his free throws then left the game.

Two trainers had to help Durant to the locker room, but we await word still on the severity of the injury.

Clearly, any lengthy injury to Durant would severely hurt the Thunder as they try to ramp up heading into a playoff stretch drive.

The Thunder were up 21 at the time of the injury and went on to win 113-89.

Kobe Bryant says his age 37 is not like Michael Jordan’s age 37

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Once again, Kobe Bryant‘s career arc is being compared to Michael Jordan’s.

There’s a lot of reason’s that’s flawed — starting with Kobe being drafted on to a Lakers team that had Shaquille O’Neal and was already considered NBA elite, as opposed to Jordan working to build a franchise up. That said, Kobe has invited the Jordan comparison at times and it has been a constant through is career. Fair or not.

Kobe is coming back this fall after seasons of injury to the NBA and those comparisons continue — now to the Wizards’ version of Jordan. And Kobe is not at all fond of that, as he told Sam Amick of the USA Today.

“This is uncharted territory,” he said. “My 37 (years old) isn’t MJ’s 37 (when he returned after taking two seasons off to play for the Washington Wizards), you know what I mean? Nor is it the same team or the same system that he was playing in. It’s much, much different. There’s really no barometer, no (precedent) for training physically, for recovery. It’s uncharted territory.”

Kobe is right. Jordan had four+ seasons off by the time he was 37 and was not coming off multiple major surgeries.

Kobe is entering his 20th NBA season and what any real basketball fan should wish for him is health. Let him play one full season (with limited minutes and nights off), let him get to the final game of this season next April and make his own decision on his future. Let him leave the game on his own terms.

That said, if Kobe can average Jordan’s numbers at that age — 22.9 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.2 assists per game — it will be a major accomplishment, and the Lakers will have a better record than many of us expect.

And Kobe may want to play a 21st season as well.

Celtics ease to 124-91 win at Olimpia Milano in Global Games

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MILAN (AP) — The Boston Celtics eased to a 124-91 victory over Olimpia Milano at the Mediolanum Forum on Tuesday, comfortably winning the first of a double-header in Europe as part of the NBA Global Games.

Isaiah Thomas led the way for the Celtics with 18 points, including nine in his first seven minutes after coming off the bench midway through the first quarter.

Jared Sullinger added 14 points, as did Avery Bradley, who also had four three-pointers, while David Lee weighed in with 13 as well as seven rebounds and three assists.

Alessandro Gentile – who is reportedly wanted by the Houston Rockets, who hold NBA rights to the 22-year-old – top scored for Milano, with 19 points.

Next up for the Celtics is Real Madrid in Spain on Thursday.