An ankle injury suffered back on Dec. 18 has forced Kevin Durant out of action, and the Thunder have been treading water with their best player sidelined.
OKC has gone 3-3 in the six games that Durant has missed, but after a slow start thanks to both Durant and Russell Westbrook missing extended time due to injury, that’s not a pace that will translate to a playoff spot in a ridiculously stacked Western Conference.
Thankfully for the Thunder, Durant was a full participant at Monday’s practice, and is expected to make his return to the lineup on Wednesday when the team hosts the Suns.
“He was very lively and active on both ends of the floor,” Scott Brooks said. “He’s progressing well. We’ll see how he feels tomorrow and go from there.”
Brooks wouldn’t commit to Durant returning from a six-game absence on Wednesday against the Suns. But signs seem to indicate that will likely be the case.
“Yeah, on the White team he scored 13 of the 17 points in about five minutes of the scrimmage,” Perkins said of KD. “So, yeah, he looked real good.”
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The Thunder currently sit two games under .500 in the standings, but despite how dominant the top of the Western Conference class has been to this point of the season, slower than expected starts by the Spurs and the Suns (in seventh and eighth respectively) have OKC still within a reasonable striking distance of obtaining one of those final postseason spots.