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Injury suffered against Wizards likely to sideline Kevin Durant until playoffs

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USA Today Sports

Injury suffered against Wizards likely to sideline Kevin Durant until playoffs

Kevin Durant was in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday night to take on the Wizards for the first time as a member of the Warriors, and the return to his hometown ended in the worst way possible.

Durant exited the first quarter of the Wizards' 112-108 victory with a knee injury after teammate Zaza Pachulia accidentally collided with him.

Durant was ruled out for the rest of the game with a hyper extended knee and was set to undergo an MRI to reveal the severity of the injury.

On Wednesday morning, the Warriors announced the results of the MRI, and while it's not terrible it certainly isn't good.

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"Following reviews of the MRI by the Warriors' medical staff, it has been determined that Durant suffered a Grade 2 Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) sprain and a tibial bone bruise," the official press release stated. "He will be out of action indefinitely and will be re-evaluated in four weeks. There is no timetable for his return, but it has not been ruled out that he could play again before the end of the regular season."

With the regular season coming to an end mid-April, Durant would be tentatively slated for a return with six games remaining before the playoffs.

Unless the Warriors go on a considerable losing streak, they are more than likely to be the top seed in the Western Conference playoff bracket. While it would be ideal to get Durant some playing time before the playoffs begin, it may not be worth it, especially considering how rare it is for No. 8 seeds to upset No. 1 seeds in the first round of the NBA Playoffs.

Could life for the Warriors without Durant be different?

Perhaps, but it was last year, and the team won an NBA record 73 regular-season games and were one win away from back-to-back NBA championships.

 

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Wizards Tipoff podcast: Fallout from the Kawhi/DeRozan trade; Kevin Love questions

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Wizards Tipoff podcast: Fallout from the Kawhi/DeRozan trade; Kevin Love questions

On the latest episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast presented by Greenberg and Bederman, Chase Hugheswas joined by Nick Ashooh to break down the fallout from the trade involving Kawhi Leonard and DeMar DeRozan.

They looked at what it means for the Wizards and the East, as well as the Lakers and LeBron. Plus, they took fan questions, many of which centered on Kevin Love and the possibility of a trade to Washington.

You can listen to the episode right here:

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Jeff Green hopes NBA Finals experience with Cavs can rub off on Wizards

Jeff Green hopes NBA Finals experience with Cavs can rub off on Wizards

Jeff Green's basketball résumé got a significant boost this spring and summer as his Cleveland Cavaliers marched all the way to the NBA Finals before they were swept by the Golden State Warriors. It was Green's first time going past the second round of the playoffs and the experience, he says, was invaluable.

Green has come about as close to winning a championship without actually winning one and he certainly hopes to get back in that position. Green believes his new team, the Washington Wizards, have the tools to make a deep playoff run and it's one of the reasons why he signed a free agent deal to join them.

"Being there last year myself with Cleveland, I know it takes a lot. It takes a lot of pieces. I feel like this team has them," he said. "We can get back to that point. When I got the call, I felt like it was the best opportunity for myself to get there."

The Wizards' franchise has not been past the second round of the playoffs since 1979, when they were known as the Bullets. That was before anyone on their roster was born.

But Green pointed to the open Eastern Conference and the talent on the roster as reasons to believe they can accomplish some things that they haven't in decades. They may be capable, but putting it all together is easier said than done.

Green hopes to be one of the glue guys necessary for the Wizards to reach their potential, in part by sharing the lessons he learned.

"Never take it for granted. There are a lot of greats that have never been there," he said. "Getting to the Finals and being part of that was beyond amazing. With the experience and seeing what it took, I can bring that here and get everybody on the same page of knowing what it takes and the sacrifices that you have to do to get to that point."

Green over and over mentioned how it takes a collective effort to go to the conference finals and beyond, but he did show some self-awareness and a sense of humor about his own experience in Cleveland. All teams are different and the one he just left was a unique situation.

"You can’t get there individually. I mean, you can, we did last year. I mean, LeBron [James] carried us all the way there," he joked. "But there’s only one LeBron, but to get there you have to have team unity. You all have to be on the same page and sacrifice to make sure you’re doing what it takes to get the team there. I think that’s the biggest key. It’s not an individual thing… unless you’re LeBron."

If the Wizards are to reach their goals and go to the conference finals or the NBA Finals, they will have to do it differently than the Cavaliers did. They do not have a player on the level of James who can do much of it by himself. But Green said the process of imparting his wisdom has already started.

"I talked to John [Wall]," Green said. "Knowing that he wants to get to the Finals, I was just picking his brain and what he thinks is needed to get there. And me sharing my experience of getting to the Finals and what it takes."

The Wizards have reached a point as an organization where they have the urgency to reach new heights. Green believes he can help them get there.

Listen to our full interview with Jeff Green on the Wizards Tipoff Podcast:

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