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MILWAUKEE — Brooklyn Nets star forward Kevin Durant continues to make progress in his rehab from a sprained left MCL and his return to the floor will happen at some point in the next week, according to coach Steve Nash.
“Every day closer,” Nash said after shootaround before Saturday’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks. “We’ll see. I expect in the next week he’ll be back for sure. It could be quick; it could be the whole week barring any setbacks.”
Veteran guard Goran Dragic will make his Nets debut against the Bucks after signing with the team earlier in the week.
Nash had hoped that Durant, who has been out since suffering the injury Jan. 15, would be back early next week, but the Nets have been hesitant to put an exact date on Durant’s return.
“I think with Kevin he’s been a great healer throughout his career,” Nash said. “So the No. 1 thing is to get him back healthy and feeling secure in his health and his body so he can move and be free. When he’s back, obviously he adds a ton to our team on both ends of the floor … one of the greatest scorers of all time. And we also know he helps us defensively; he gives us more size and length. So he’s a big miss for us, and whenever he gets back, he’ll impact our team.”
Dragic has not played since Nov. 13 as a member of the Toronto Raptors.
“We’re going to see how it’s going to go,” Dragic said. “It’s just limited minutes, but I’m happy to finally step on the court after, what, three or four months.”
As for Ben Simmons, it remains unclear when he will play his first game with the Nets. Simmons, who was acquired at the trade deadline in a deal that sent James Harden to the Philadelphia 76ers, is traveling with the team but is going through individual work only.
The Nets want to make sure that Simmons is comfortable before taking his workouts to a different level.
“He’s not gone to high intensity yet,” Nash said. “Just ramping him up still.”