The Houston Rockets will be without Chris Paul tonight and the latest in regard to the severity of the injury has surfaced. What’s going on? Let’s take a look and see.
The Houston Rockets are looking to try to get to their first NBA Finals since they won the second of back-to-back championships in 1995. It certainly won’t be easy with Chris Paul not being able to play tonight.
Paul has made so much of a difference in the lineup this season, with him being the floor general that we all needed. Patrick Beverley served this team formidably throughout his tenure but he never was a TRUE point guard because he lacked the innate facilitation skills that Paul possesses.
We have that now in Paul and it’s world of difference in terms of how the ball moves with him in the lineup. The Houston Rockets have been averaging 16.1 assists per game in this series and the Rockets had 13 assists Saturday night’s Game 6 which is close but still below average.
The Houston Rockets isolated James Harden plenty in Game 6 but it suffered in terms of being able produce points as quickly as possible. He’s still averaging close to two points per play but with frenetic as the pace the Golden State Warriors put out each and every game, it simply isn’t enough.
That’s why Paul will be sorely missed. But the latest in regard to severity of the hamstring strain was released recently and here’s the details from ESPN’s Ramona Shelbourne:
Grade 1: Mild (can possibly recover in a few days)
Grade 2: Partial Tear (recovery over a few weeks)
Grade 3: Severe, complete tear (could take multiple weeks/months to heal)
When I had heard the news of this, I immediately thought about Harden’s injury and how long he was out. He missed seven games over the course of about two weeks in January. Will it take that long for Paul to heal? That could be varied answer because the Houston Rockets likely weren’t necessarily rushing Harden back because of the team having solidified their positioning as one of the leaders in the Western Conference.
If we use that timeline as a guide, if the team does win Game 7, then I’d see Paul playing Sunday, June 3 (Game 2) at likely the earliest window of opportunity but likely well into next week. I still think a return this Thursday is too quick of a turnaround.
But I’m making my predictions based off of something that hasn’t happened yet so we just have to keep our fingers crossed that he heals in speedy manner and that when he returns to hardwood, we’re still competing for a championship.
Good luck CP3!