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Nets GM Sean Marks declines to rule out Kevin Durant for season

It’s widely believed that Kevin Durant will be forced to sit out the entire 2019-20 NBA season while recovering from a ruptured right Achilles tendon. That doesn’t mean Brooklyn Nets general manager Sean Marks feels the same way.

Marks, who helped spearhead the Nets’ successful efforts to land not only Durant but Kyrie Irving as well in free agency, admitted this week that Durant sitting out the entire season is not necessarily a certainty, though he unsurprisingly declined to lay out any specific plan or anything of that nature.

“He will be evaluated with the performance team and so forth,” Marks said, via the New York Post. “A timeline will be given in due time, but as of now, we’re certainly not going to comment on when or if and make any sort of hypotheticals. It’s too early.”

Durant has a long history with Nets orthopedist Martin O’Malley, who not only performed the recent procedure on the superstar’s Achilles but also his foot fracture back in 2015. Marks indicated the team will lean heavily on O’Malley’s expertise and rely upon his familiarity with Durant to determine the best course for rehab and recovery.

“The first time we got together was [Monday], to be quite frank. Our doctors and performance team, we met with Kevin and conducted a full evaluation. They got their hands on him and explained to him: This is what the program looks like,” Marks said. “I can’t speak for Kevin. I assume there’s a level of comfort knowing Dr. O’Malley is in New York.”

There would be no reason whatsoever for the Nets to rush Durant along given the team signed him to a four-year, $164 million deal. Odds are the Nets will exercise extreme caution and wait for Durant to don their uniform for the first time in 2020-21. According to Marks, however, it seems there’s no reason to rule anything out at this point.