Kevin Durant dropped 30 in the first half on Golden State and was on his way to what looked like an epic game when the play above happened. Durant rolled his ankle, and while X-rays were negative Durant did not return for the second half of what was an eventual Warriors win.
Durant now will sit out the second night of a back-to-back, he will not go against the Lakers Friday night, reports Royce Young of ESPN. Perry Jones III will get the start.
Yes, it’s likely being cautious, but it’s also the right play for a couple of reasons.
First, while the Thunder certainly need to rack up wins, they are playing the lowly Lakers — a team they can beat without Durant. Russell Westbrook should destroy the Lakers defenders of Jeremy Lin and Ronnie Price. The Thunder should rack up a win.
Second, it’s not even Christmas yet. Once the ligament is stretched out with a sprained ankle a player is more susceptible to aggravating or worsening the problem until it fully heals. The Thunder don’t want this to become a lingering thing. This is not a playoff game. Rest the man and get him right.