KD set for MRI after leaving win with calf strain

Stephen A.: KD's injury looked like more than a 'calf strain' (1:29)

Stephen A. Smith rips into the Rockets for their Game 5 loss to the Warriors and speculates about the severity of Kevin Durant's injury. (1:29)

OAKLAND, Calif. -- Golden State Warriors superstar Kevin Durant suffered a right calf strain in the third quarter of Game 5 against the Houston Rockets on Wednesday night and was ruled out of the Warriors' 104-99 victory.

There was no immediate word on the severity of the strain. Durant will have an MRI on Thursday.

"We're all obviously disappointed for him," Warriors coach Steve Kerr said in his postgame news conference. "And excited about the win, but concerned for Kevin and disappointed for him. He's been on this incredible playoff run, and I'm proud of our guys for pulling the game out. And we'll see how Kevin's doing tomorrow."

Kerr later told The Athletic that it is unlikely Durant will play in Game 6 in Houston on Friday. That feeling was shared by a number of Warriors personnel inside the locker room who were resigned to the likelihood that Durant would miss time, at a minimum Friday's contest.

"We don't know," Warriors general manager Bob Myers told The Undefeated and NBC Sports Bay Area. "It's a hard one to say, it really is. I don't know until we see [the MRI]. And then [the doctors] determine the grades of these things, and then we'll know."

Both Kerr and Warriors guard Stephen Curry noted that Durant was understandably down after the injury, but there was a palpable sense of relief within the locker room that his injury wasn't more severe. Initially, players and coaches feared that Durant tore his Achilles tendon, but Kerr was told by the Warriors' medical staff that that was not the case.

"It's not the Achilles," Kerr said. "When I walked into the coach's office after the game, the replay of the play was going on. I thought the same thing, because he kind of looked back like he had been kicked or something. I've seen that before with guys who have hurt their Achilles. That was my first question. I was assured it's a calf strain, not the Achilles."

Veteran Golden State swingman Andre Iguodala noted that it was injured center DeMarcus Cousins -- out now with a torn quad injury, after tearing his Achilles last season as a member of the New Orleans Pelicans -- who helped calm down the rest of the Warriors when Durant left the floor.

"That's a scary one," Iguodala said. "If you look back, it's one of the scary injuries with the Achilles, so it was good to see that wasn't the case. It is initial shock. DeMarcus did a really good job of just kind of settling everyone back down a little bit and say, 'All right, you'll be fine. Go play the game.' And he sent that message, and it got across to all the guys."

Durant's injury came with 2:11 left in the third quarter as he went up for a jumper over Rockets swingman Iman Shumpert. Durant did not appear to make contact with Shumpert, but after landing, he took a few steps up the court, then clutched his right leg. He limped toward the Rockets' bench, and after a few moments, he went straight to the Warriors' locker room, accompanied by trainers and Myers.

Durant had 22 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists in 32 minutes before leaving the win, which put the Warriors up 3-2 in this best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal series. It is unclear whether he will be able to travel to Houston for Game 6.

"Next man up," Warriors guard Klay Thompson said. "If we need to have him take off a game, we will, 'cause we need him healthy; we plan on playing for a long time. So, we desperately need him if we wanna win a championship, but we can win one game without him. I have confidence in this group."

With Durant out for an indefinite amount of time, Curry acknowledged that the Warriors would have to go back to how they played four years ago, before Golden State acquired its star forward.

"Whoever has the ball, no matter if it's off a pick-and-roll, we swing, make the defense work, make decisions on that end of the floor," Curry said. "We still have a lot of weapons and can create good offense through that type of attack.

"At the end of the day, everything that we do starts with our defense. That gave us a chance to win down the stretch with how hard we played on that end of the floor. Just subtle changes that happen when you don't have those playcalls that gets K in the right spot to take advantage of his talent. We'll tap into that for however long he's out."

As disappointed as the Warriors are about Durant's injury, the resilient group took pride in being able to scratch out a win in Game 5 without its offensive catalyst.

Kerr echoed Curry's sentiments about reworking the offense without Durant, something he said coaches would do during the team's flight to Houston on Thursday afternoon. But Kerr, who is expected to address the media again Thursday night after the team's charter lands in Texas, was proud of his players for fighting until the end of Wednesday's game.

"If Kevin is out, then what you saw in the fourth quarter is what you're gonna have to see going forward," Kerr said. "We're gonna have to find a way. But got it done today. I don't know if you're a soccer fan, but Liverpool, yesterday, came out with just one of the great wins in soccer history. After the match, their manager, Jurgen Klopp, said, 'The young kids in Liverpool are probably asleep by now, so I'm just gonna go ahead and say it, but our boys are f---ing giants.' That's what he said, and I know how he feels.

"So, I apologize to my mom, who is probably watching, but our guys are f---ing giants. That was an unbelievable victory tonight."

The Undefeated's Marc Spears contributed to this report.