The Brooklyn Nets will have to wait at least another week and a half before their “Big Three” can be back on the court together. The Eastern Conference leaders will be without James Harden for at least the next 10 days.
An MRI on Tuesday revealed that the 31-year-old suffered a right hamstring string recently, according to multiple reports. Harden played in just four minutes of Monday night’s 114-112 win over the New York Knicks because of “hamstring tightness.”
That nagging discomfort has turned out to be more serious and will sideline Harden for the foreseeable future. He’ll be reevaluated in “approximately 10 days”, according to a team release.
“Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden underwent an MRI earlier today which revealed a right hamstring strain. Harden will continue to rehab the hamstring and will be re-evaluated in approximately 10 days,” the official announcement said, per Marc Stein.
Full announcement from the Nets on James Harden missing at least 10 days with a right hamstring strain: pic.twitter.com/NAJcfdtak5
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) April 6, 2021
It’s unfortunate timing for the Nets, who also got some positive injury news ahead of Wednesday’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans. For the first time in nearly two months, Kevin Durant will be available to play.
Durant, 32, has only played in 19 games this year after being missing time due to the league’s health and safety procedures and with a hamstring strain. When he’s been on the court, he’s been sharp, averaging 29.0 points, 7.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists on 52.4 percent shooting.
Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant is expected to return Wednesday vs. New Orleans after missing nearly two months with hamstring strain. He is listed probable to play.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) April 6, 2021
But, the Harden injury news is just the latest in what’s been a frustrating regular season in Brooklyn. Since the Nets traded for the former Rockets superstar in January, the trio of Durant, Harden and Kyrie Irving have played in just seven total games together.
The diagnosis is even more disappointing for Harden, who had established himself as an MVP candidate since joining the Nets. After arriving in Brooklyn, he’s averaged 25.2 points, 8.0 rebounds and 10.9 assists.
Even with the plethora of absences this year, the Nets remain atop the Eastern Conference standings, leading the Philadelphia 76ers by a half game as of Tuesday.
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