Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving
Photo: Steven Ryan/Getty Images

Steve Nash explained why he decided to rest both Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving in the game against the Memphis Grizzlies.

Nash, the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets, said he has to monitor Irving and Durant’s condition in order to protect them.

“Just trying to be really measured with the demands on those guys and monitoring their adaptation back to the NBA. Kevin hasn’t played in 18 months coming off a career-threatening injury.

Kyrie has had surgery. He’s played 20 games in 18 months or more, so we’ve got to monitor it with all the demands placed on them and be able to protect them and their ongoing health,” Nash told reporters, via Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.

Durant has averaged 26.7 points, on 53.2 percent shooting, this season, while Irving is averaging 29.3 points (61.1 percent FG) and six assists per game.

In the second game of the back-to-back set, the Nets lost to the Grizzlies in overtime (116-111) and suffered their second straight defeat (2-2).