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NBA notebook: Irving to have knee surgery

Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving will undergo surgery on his troublesome left knee Saturday, the team announced Friday.

The Celtics said that Irving will undergo “a minimally invasive procedure to alleviate irritation.” The club is expected to provide a timetable for Irving’s return after the surgery with the hope that the procedure will lead to Irving being healthy when the playoffs begin in mid-April.

Irving, who turned 26 on Friday, received a second opinion on the knee Thursday. He hasn’t played since departing at halftime of a March 11 game against the Indiana Pacers.

Friday’s game against the Portland Trail Blazers will mark the fifth straight game Irving will miss.

— Golden State Warriors star point guard Stephen Curry was cleared to return for the team’s game against the Atlanta Hawks.

Curry returned to practice Wednesday after having his ailing right ankle re-evaluated Tuesday. He initially re-aggravated his ankle issue in the opening minutes of a March 8 contest against the San Antonio Spurs and has missed the past six games, four of which have been Golden State losses.

The Warriors desperately need Curry back in the lineup as Kevin Durant (ribs), Klay Thompson (hand) and Draymond Green (pelvic contusion) are all out.

–The Phoenix Suns are beginning their search for a new head coach.

While interim head coach Jay Triano remains a candidate, the team plans a wide-reaching search that will ramp up immediately following the end of the regular season.

“This is going to be a competitive marketplace,” Phoenix general manager Ryan McDonough told ESPN. “There are three of us (Phoenix, Milwaukee and Memphis) with interim coaches in place, and we want to be able to hit the ground running. We don’t want to have to wait until the end of the regular season for candidates who aren’t with teams now. At the end of the regular season, we’ll be able to talk with coaches on non-playoff teams and we’ll need to work with playoff teams on what their approach will be on contacting (assistant) coaches still in the postseason.”

–The Los Angeles Lakers have signed forward Travis Wear for the remainder of the season, the team announced.

Wear joined the team on his first 10-day contract early in March and has since appeared in 10 games for the Lakers.

He’s averaging 4.8 points and 2.2 rebounds in Los Angeles.

–Milwaukee Bucks interim coach Joe Prunty didn’t give a timeline for Giannis Antetokounmpo’s return from a sprained ankle, but also didn’t seem concerned it would be a lengthy absence, according to an ESPN report.

Antetokounmpo left the Bucks’ Wednesday loss to the Los Angeles Clippers in the second quarter and did not return after turning his right ankle. He didn’t travel with the team for its game against the Chicago Bulls.

Antetokounmpo is averaging 27.5 points and 10.1 rebounds for the Bucks, who have a firm grasp on a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

–Field Level Media

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