Report: Kevin Durant could return from ankle injury for Wednesday's Suns-Timberwolves game
Phoenix Suns forward Kevin Durant is "progressing" and could return from an ankle injury Wednesday against the Minnesota Timberwolves, The Athletic's Shams Charania reports.
That timeline line would have Durant back for the final seven games of the Suns' regular season.
Durant sprained his left ankle during pregame warmups for a March 8 game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The game was slated to be his Suns home debut after he arrived in Phoenix via midseason trade from the Brooklyn Nets.
Durant took an awkward step and fell on the court during a pregame drill.
Here’s video of Kevin Durant slipping on the floor pregame.
He stayed down for a few seconds but then got up and finished his on-court work. pic.twitter.com/DwTrNc6LIr
— Kellan Olson (@KellanOlson) March 9, 2023
He was a late scratch for the game, and the Suns announced on March 9 that Durant sustained a left ankle sprain and would be reevaluated in three weeks. A return March 29 against the Timberwolves would put Durant one day ahead of that three-week time frame.
Entering Friday's NBA slate, the Suns are in fourth place in the West with a 38-34 record. They are tied with the Los Angeles Clippers and a game ahead of the sixth-place Golden State Warriors, who would hold the conference's last guaranteed playoff spot if the postseason started Friday. The Suns are five games behind the third-place Sacramento Kings.
Durant made his Suns debut March 1, and the Suns thrived with both Durant and Devin Booker on the floor. Phoenix went 4-0 with both players in the lineup, with three of the wins by 14 points or more. The Suns have gone 1-5 since Durant's injury.
If Durant, Booker and Chris Paul all remain healthy, the Suns are on the short list of favorites to win the NBA championship.