James Harden Will Not Play In Game 2 Against The Bucks With Hamstring Tightness

The Brooklyn Nets won Game 1 of their first round series against the Bucks thanks in large part to the efforts of Mike James and Blake Griffin, who combined for 30 points in the opener to help fill the significant hole left behind by James Harden leaving the game a minute in after aggravating the hamstring injury that caused him to miss time late in the regular season.

Harden came up limping after his first drive of the game and never returned, but with the efforts of Griffin and James, alongside strong nights from Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, they still got the win. That said, the margin for error against a good Milwaukee team is much slimmer without Harden, and the team confirmed on Sunday that the star point guard would not play in Game 2 with what is officially being deemed right hamstring tightness.

That will put a premium once again on the Nets to find not just scoring from others beyond Durant and Irving, but most importantly more playmaking to keep their offense humming. Kyrie Irving will play more of that point guard role and he facilitated well in the opener with eight assists. James figures to get ample opportunity to continue his strong play from Game 1, and if there is a positive it’s that the Nets injury issues all season have given Steve Nash plenty of time to try different lineups and he knows what bench players play best with his starters and vice versa.

As for when Harden could return, Nash said Harden hopes to be back soon but that the team will protect his health first and foremost.