The Nets were only able to put their full squad on the floor for a few games during the regular season, and now Brooklyn’s health issues have extended into the NBA playoffs.
James Harden has essentially missed the Nets’ entire Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Bucks after suffering a hamstring injury in the opening minute of Game 1. Jeff Green has also been sidelined, cutting down coach Steve Nash’s rotation and limiting lineup versatility.
Brooklyn is still in good shape despite the injuries, as it holds a 2-1 lead over Milwaukee heading into Sunday’s contest. But the Nets would certainly like to see two of their key pieces back on the court as soon as possible.
Here are the latest updates on Harden and Green ahead of Game 4.
Will James Harden play vs. Bucks?
Harden is officially listed as out for Game 4, the same status he had for the previous two games against the Bucks.
“We’re optimistic that we can have him back at some point, but we can’t set a timeline yet,” Nash said on Wednesday.
Harden was forced to leave Game 1 after playing just 43 seconds. He was diagnosed with “right hamstring tightness,” but an MRI revealed no structural damage.
In the Nets’ first-round series against the Celtics, Harden averaged 27.8 points, 10.6 assists and 7.2 rebounds per game while shooting 55.6 percent from the field and 47.5 percent from beyond the arc.
Will Jeff Green play vs. Bucks?
UPDATE: The Nets announced that Green is available to play in Game 4.
Jeff Green is AVAILABLE for Game 4 pic.twitter.com/mOCK7pZOvX
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) June 13, 2021
ORIGINAL: After being listed as out earlier in the series, Green has been upgraded to questionable for Game 4.
The 34-year-old, who has been sidelined since straining his left plantar fascia in Game 2 of the Nets-Celtics series, is able to run up and down the court, but he is still working on cutting and other specific movements. He admitted that it has been difficult to sit for an extended stretch.
“I hate being out,” Green said. “Like James always says, he always takes pride in being available for his teammates, and I’m the same way. It’s painful being out. Not even going out there, helping, scoring — it’s about just being out there to be present to do whatever I can to help the team. That’s why you see me on the sidelines up every play, trying to be a voice from the sideline. But not physically being out there is tough. It’s hard.”
In 68 regular-season games, Green averaged 11.0 points and 3.9 rebounds, shooting a career-high 41.2 percent from 3-point range.
Nets vs. Bucks Game 4 injury report
(Current as of 1:30 p.m. ET Sunday)
|Nets||Spencer Dinwiddie||Out||Right knee; partially torn ACL|
|Nets||Jeff Green||Questionable||Left plantar fascia; strain|
|Nets||James Harden||Out||Right hamstring; tightness|
|Bucks||Donte DiVincenzo||Out||Left ankle; surgery|
|Bucks||Jordan Nwora||Out||Left thigh; contusion|