James Harden: Rockets will have to ‘figure it out’ amid Chris Paul injury
James Harden is taking a practical and pragmatic approach to Chris Paul suffering another injury, saying the Houston Rockets have no choice but to play the hand the team has been dealt.
“We’ve got to figure it out,” Harden said after Thursday’s 101-99 loss to the Miami Heat, via the Sporting News. “Injuries happen.”
Paul suffered a hamstring injury during the second quarter of the loss, and it did not look encouraging from the get-go.
Uh oh. Chris Paul leaves the game with a hamstring injury. pic.twitter.com/FncgQwFjzG— Dime (@DimeUPROXX) December 21, 2018
Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni made it clear this will likely not be short-term issue, saying after the game that Paul is expected to miss “some time” with the hamstring tweak. D’Antoni added Paul will undergo an MRI Friday, which presumably will shed some light on the severity of the injury.
The Rockets have posted a woeful 0-5 record this season with Paul out of the lineup. Houston has been outscored by an average of 9.4 points per game in those five losses.
After stumbling out of the gate to start the season, the Rockets have seemingly started to find their bearings in recent weeks. At one point, the Rockets were 11-13 and near the cellar in the Western Conference. Following Thursday’s loss, Houston is 16-15 and occupy the eighth spot in the West.
While such a position in the standings is hardly what the Rockets envisioned after taking the Golden State Warriors to a seventh game in the Western Conference Finals last season, the recent recovery was obviously encouraging.
With Paul out for the foreseeable future, the Rockets’ effort to right the ship obviously has been hit with a serious setback, despite the relative progress made of late.