The Golden State Warriors have been pushed to the brink by the Toronto Raptors in the 2019 NBA Finals. A big reason that they’re facing a 3-1 deficit in the series, is the various injuries they’ve dealt with. Most notable among them is the calf injury that has kept Kevin Durant on the sideline since Game 5 of their second-round series against the Houston Rockets.
Whether or not Durant returns for Game 5 of the Finals on Monday night in Toronto remains to be seen, but based on the most recent reporting from ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, it doesn’t look good. Following the Warriors’ Game 4 loss, Windhorst reported that Durant struggled during practice, and just isn’t ready to play.
Windhorst’s full report:
Here’s what I do know. Durant just isn’t ready. His body’s not ready. The trainers don’t believe it, he doesn’t believe it, he tried to do some stuff in practice yesterday, it didn’t work. There was frustration all around, I’m sure from Kevin about it. Steve Kerr was really clipped about it. He basically said today, ‘I’m not gonna give you any updates about Durant. I’m just gonna tell you whether he’s playing or not.’ He’s frustrated about it too.
There’s no surprise that this is a frustrating situation for everyone involved. Not only are the Warriors facing the rare position of trailing 3-1 in the Finals, but just a few days ago it seemed Durant was on the verge of returning.
In addition, the Warriors have to feel like they wouldn’t be facing this kind of deficit if they had a healthy Durant in this series, let alone the other injuries they’re dealing with.
In any case, it will be fascinating to see how the Warriors respond in Game 5 after two straight losses, regardless of whether Durant is on the floor or not.