May 2, 2014, 11:56 AM EST
The Memphis Grizzlies are not winning Game 7 without point guard Mike Conley.
He’s too important to their defense on Russell Westbrook. He’s also too important to their ability to control the tempo of the game, take care of the ball and not turn the game into a track meet with the athletic Thunder.
Conley tweaked his right hamstring in the third quarter of the Thunder’s Game 6 win in Memphis (which forced Saturday’s Game 7). He went back to the locker room when it happened, came back out and tried to give it a go, but said after the game he couldn’t push off or really run, so he sat back down for the rest of the game.
Conley said in a televised interview after the game he planned to get treatment — ice, stimulation machines — and he hoped to be ready for Game 7. But hamstring injury can be tricky things, ones slow to heal properly heal. There just isn’t time for that now.
Coach Dave Joerger is hopeful Conley can play, reports Anthony Slater of the Oklahoman.
No Conley means a lot of Beno Udrih, which would be a big step down in quality for Memphis.
Expect updates on Conley’s status the next 48 hours up until Game 7. You can bet he tries to play, but just how effective can he really be?
- Derek Fisher questions ‘character and integrity’ of players after Knicks lose to Kings by 38 points 16
- Five Things We Learned in NBA Tuesday: The Hawks clinched playoff spot in front of Josh Smith 4
- Nuggets need to decide direction, then hire coach 18
- Report: Russell Westbrook ‘likely’ to return to Thunder lineup Wednesday, will wear protective mask 13
- Nuggets have fired head coach Brian Shaw 29
- Five Things We Learned in NBA Monday: Goran Dragic got his revenge in concentrated form 5
- League suspends James Harden one game for kick to LeBron James’ groin 23
- PBT’s weekly NBA Power Rankings: Hawks seem to be out of malaise. Maybe. 11