After losing four of five games to drop to under .500, the Nets will be without Durant for a run of games beginning Tuesday against Utah and continuing through Thursday (Philadelphia), Friday (Memphis) and Sunday (Oklahoma City).
As long as Durant continues to test negative for the coronavirus, the soonest he can return is Jan. 12 against the Denver Nuggets.
Durant, who had COVID-19 in May, has continued to register coronavirus antibodies and tested negative for the virus three times in recent days, sources said.
Family members and close contacts of NBA players are allowed to be regularly tested for the coronavirus, so once an individual tests positive, the player enters contact tracing/quarantine protocols.
The NBA’s COVID-19 protocols do not distinguish between players who have antibodies and those who do not.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, antibodies are “proteins that help fight off infections and can provide protection against getting that disease again.” Scientists are still unsure what degree of immunity antibodies provide against being infected again.
Durant, who missed the 2019-20 season rehabbing an Achilles injury, has had a torrid offensive start to the season, averaging 28.2 points, 7 rebounds and 4.8 assists.