David Lee Makes Instant Impact in Surprise Second-Round Debut

Jimmy Spencer@JimmySpencerNBANBA Lead WriterMay 11, 2013

David Lee returned again for the Warriors in the second quarter of Game 3.
David Lee returned again for the Warriors in the second quarter of Game 3.Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Perhaps it's too soon to compare David Lee to Willis Reed just yet.

That type of talk is reserved for Game 7 of the NBA Finals.

But the Golden State Warriors' All-Star forward is doing his best impression of the New York Knicks legend, as Lee reappeared again in Game 3 of the Western Conference semifinals against the San Antonio Spurs on Friday.  

Lee, who suffered what was supposed to be a season-ending hip flexor tear in Game 1 of the opening round against the Denver Nuggets, has now appeared in two games since. Lee played in just a minute-and-a-half in Game 6 of the Warriors' series-clinching victory on May 2.

On Friday, Lee appeared again for three minutes in the second quarter, scoring five points and grabbing two rebounds.

On his first offensive possession of the game, he grabbed an offensive rebound and scored an and-1 putback. He then knocked down a mid-range jumper from atop the key.

Warriors coach Mark Jackson said before the game that he may use Lee in spurts of minutes, but nothing nearly as extensive as the 25-minute mark. Lee will likely need offseason surgery to for the injury.

Before the game, Lee discussed his status this postseason:

Willis Reed, the captain of the 1970 Knicks, returned for Game 7 of a Finals championship after tearing his thigh muscle in Game 5. It's thought of as the greatest surprising comeback, or moment of playing hurt, in NBA history.