TORONTO — Nets guard Patty Mills missed Friday’s 119-116 victory over the Raptors with a non-COVID illness and seems likely to miss Sunday’s game in Detroit as well.
Mills had been a DNP-coach’s decision in Monday’s victory at Washington, but was under the weather Thursday. He was held out of that day’s practice to not be contagious to the rest of the team, and the Nets did not bring him north to Canada either.
“Patty did not travel. He is non-COVID, did not travel,” said coach Jacque Vaughn, who didn’t expect the veteran guard to join the team in Detroit for Sunday either. “He’s pretty [sick]. He’s doubtful for Detroit. Yeah, he’s doubtful.”
Nets guard Seth Curry returned to the court Friday against the Raptors. He had been questionable with a tight right hamstring and had imaging Thursday after arriving in Toronto. But it came up clean, and after testing the hamstring in pregame warmups, he pronounced himself fit to play.
“I’m good,” said Curry, who played seven scoreless minutes off the bench and recorded an assist.
“Seth had an MRI when we got here [Thursday] night. MRI was clean, which is great,” Vaughn had said before Curry’s status was finalized.
“We MRI everything now, we do an MRI every time. He was clean, and then he’s actually scheduled to shoot out there on the court just to make sure, and we’ll have a kind of game-time decision. We want him to feel good. MRI was clean, that part is checked off. You want him to feel good as a player, also.”
The Nets were fined $25,000 by the NBA for injury reporting related to last Saturday’s game when eight rotation players missed their win at Indiana. Vaughn had said at the time he didn’t expect any blowback. On Friday, he shrugged it off, saying the Nets had no plans to appeal the decision.
“Ah, you know me; I am about facts and logic,” Vaughn said. “We got fined. We’re going to accept the fine and play. That’s it.”
Yuta Watanabe had 17 points off the bench against his former team. He hit 6 of 7 from the field and 3 of 4 from behind the arc — including a huge go-ahead corner 3-pointer with 15 seconds left on a kick out from Kyrie Irving.
“Last two games. I wasn’t shooting well, so I was it was good to see my shot go in,” Watanabe said. “Again, I really appreciate my teammates just kept telling me to shoot with a confident. So yeah, it was a team effort.”
“Ky got the ball. He just drove. I was wide open. He found me. He gave me a great pass.”