Kevin Durant has missed the Thunder’s first 17 games of the season, but that streak will come to an end as early as tonight against the Pelicans.
Durant underwent surgery in the offseason to repair a foot fracture, but went through practice with his team on Monday.
A report emerged that said Durant may return to the lineup this week, but Durant and Scott Brooks confirmed on Tuesday that Durant will play against the Pelicans.
“If Kevin Durant goes through shootaround today in New Orleans OK, doesn’t get hurt in that shootaround, the plan is for him to make his season debut tonight against the Pelicans,” ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said in a video segment.
The Thunder are just 5-12 on the season, but looked great once they got Russell Westbrook back during a 27-point thrashing of the Knicks. That’ll only get scarier with Durant’s return, just in time to give Oklahoma City a chance to salvage its season by turning things around.
A year ago, 49 wins was the cutoff for teams to make the playoffs in the Western Conference. The Thunder need to win more than 67 percent of their remaining games to reach that number, but when fully healthy, they’re more than capable of doing exactly that.
Durant is the reigning MVP, and averaged 32 points, 7.4 rebounds and 5.5 assists last season.