For the first time in months, Kyrie Irving is finally ready to play again.
Irving is set to make his return to the court on Sunday for the Brooklyn Nets’ game against the Atlanta Hawks at the Barclays Center after missing their past 26 games with a shoulder injury, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Irving was officially listed as “probable” on the Nets’ injury report on Saturday.
On Sunday, the Nets listed Irving as active. He’ll make his return during the contest, as expected.
Irving first injured his shoulder on Nov. 12, and then re-aggravated it again days later. Instead of a quick return, as many expected, Irving was sidelined completely for almost two months. He missed several key matchups during that time, too, including a pair of games against the Boston Celtics, his former team — a move that even caused some to think he was faking the injury all together.
The 27-year-old did return to full team workouts recently, however, and is “preparing for his return” on Sunday, according to Wojnarowski. He has played in just 11 games this season for Brooklyn, averaging 28.5 points, 7.2 assists and 5.4 rebounds. The team went 13-13 without him, most recently beating the Miami Heat 117-113 on Friday.
“I’m doing a lot better,” Irving said earlier this month, via the Nets. “It’s just been a lot of questions I have for what would be the best-case scenario for me to go out there and play, and what can I possibly play through with this shoulder injury.
“It’s very unique because it’s the first time I’ve ever had such a significant feeling in my shoulder where I’m going up to shoot jump shots and I can’t really lift my shoulder to get up in that jump shot position and its impinging. There was some bursitis in there that was really, really impacting me going out there and playing my game at a very high level.”
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