It’s been a bizarre Friday night for Kevin Durant, the Brooklyn Nets, and the NBA.

Let’s start from the beginning. Durant — who tested positive for COVID-19 last March — didn’t start the Nets’ game against the Toronto Raptors — nationally televised on ESPN — due to health and safety protocols, and was reportedly undergoing contact tracing.

Well, roughly 20 minutes after those tweets, Durant appeared on the Brooklyn bench and quickly checked into the game.

Durant scored eight points with six rebounds and five assists in 19 minutes. And then he was forced to leave the game in the third quarter, once again due to health and safety protocols. He was not happy.

So why the heck was Durant allowed to enter the game (or even the bench) to begin with? And what changed between the first and third quarter to force his exit?

The NBA released a statement saying that Durant tested negative three times in the last 24 hours, but somebody he interacted with earlier in the day had an inconclusive test shortly before the game. The league says that Durant was initially held out while that was being reviewed, but added that they don’t require a player to be quarantined until a close contact has a confirmed positive test. Well, that person indeed returned a positive test during the game, leading to Durant being pulled and put back into contact tracing.

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the rest of the Nets players have been cleared to travel to Philadelphia for Saturday’s game against the 76ers, but Durant won’t make the trip. Durant missed four games last month due to contact tracing as well.

And Durant has taken to Twitter to show his frustration: “Free me.”

He also tagged the NBA in a quote tweet of Banner Society writer Brian Floyd: “Yo @nba, your fans aren’t dumb!!!! You can’t fool em with your Wack ass PR tactics.. #FREE7.”

Durant’s teammate James Harden was also frustrated and confused by Friday night’s events.

And Nets head coach Steve Nash said he didn’t handle the situation as well as he could’ve.

While the NBA offered explanations for what happened with all of this, there are still a lot of questions that need to be asked- especially for a league that’s insisting on having a midseason exhibition game during a pandemic.

Without Durant for the final quarter-plus, the Nets lost 123-117 to the Raptors.

About Matt Clapp

Matt is an editor at The Comeback. He attended Colorado State University, wishes he was Saved by the Bell's Zack Morris, and idolizes Larry David. And loves pizza and dogs because obviously.

He can be followed on Twitter at @Matt2Clapp (also @TheBlogfines for Cubs/MLB tweets and @DaBearNecess for Bears/NFL tweets), and can be reached by email at