NBA News Story - Durant optimistic of playing in Warriors' Game 3 at Portland

 
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Durant optimistic of playing in Warriors' Game 3 at Portland

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

By JANIE McCAULEY

AP Sports Writer

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Kevin Durant said he felt ready to play in Golden State's Game 2 playoff win a day earlier yet the Warriors opted to be cautious with their superstar as he nurses a strained left calf.

Durant posted an update about his injury during a livestream on his personal YouTube channel Thursday evening. He is hopeful of playing in Saturday's Game 3 at Portland as the Warriors try to take a 3-0 lead in the series, though coach Steve Kerr said being up two games could affect any decision.

"I miss being out there with them and hopefully I'm out there the next game. Speaking of that, I have a little calf injury," Durant said, showing his left calf wrapped with blue tape . "Unfortunate that I pulled my calf in Game 1 in the third quarter. It felt good to finish the game but afterward it tightened up on me a little bit and I was sore for the next few days."

After he missed 19 games with a left knee injury sustained Feb. 28 at Washington then returning for the final three regular-season contests, the Warriors certainly aren't going to take any risks with KD . He had 32 points and 10 rebounds in a Game 1 victory Sunday - his playoff debut with the Warriors.

"It felt like I could go yesterday but Coach Kerr and the training staff and the whole organization told me it would be best to give it a few more days of rest, so hopefully I'll see how I feel these next couple days," Durant said. "We have one more extra day before the game starts, we'll see how I feel. But I'm getting better every day. Hopefully I can be out there with my teammates grinding it out, trying to move forward and get a W in Game 3. We'll see what happens."

Golden State took the day off from practice Thursday following the 110-81 victory, then was scheduled to practice Friday morning before flying to Portland.

"We've been in that situation and hopefully it's a very short absence for him and he'll be back soon," center Zaza Pachulia said. "But health is very important, obviously. Yeah, every game matters but at the same time we're looking far into the future where we're playing for another two months. Hopefully it's just a little problem, not a big deal."

While Durant is impatient to get on the court, he said he will get all the treatment and ice needed for his injury.

"It's a bummer, man, I hate being out. I hate being hurt," Durant said. "It's something that's kind of out of my control right now, just try to get better. ... I'm positive about it. Up 2-0, going to Portland, the series starts Game 3. Can't wait."

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Updated April 20, 2017

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