James Harden Won't Play for Nets vs. Warriors Because of Hand Injury

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIJanuary 30, 2022

Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden (13) celebrates after his basket against the San Antonio Spurs during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/Jessie Alcheh)
AP Photo/Jessie Alcheh

Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden will miss his team's road game against the Golden State Warriors on Saturday with a right hand strain, the team announced.

Nets head coach Steve Nash revealed some background regarding the injury pregame:

Kendra Andrews @kendra__andrews

Steve Nash said James Harden had been feeling some discomfort in his hand for a while but thought it was fine. The hand flared up this morning and scans revealed he suffered a hand strain. <br><br>He’s a game-time decision.

Harden, a nine-time All-Star and three-time scoring champion, has averaged 23.0 points, 10.1 assists and 8.1 rebounds per game for the 29-19 Nets, which are fifth in the Eastern Conference. He's in his second season with Brooklyn and 13th in the NBA.

The 32-year-old has played 42 of a possible 48 games this season.

The Nets rested Harden for their 116-104 win over the Detroit Pistons on Dec. 12. He then entered the NBA's health-and-safety protocols and missed three more games before returning Dec. 25 against the Los Angeles Lakers.

He remained in the lineup for eight more games before he was sidelined for his team's 114-108 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on Jan. 11 with a left knee hyperextension.

He then sat the Nets' game against the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday with left hamstring tightness.

Without Harden on Saturday, expect Kyrie Irving to assume more usage for the Nets, especially with Kevin Durant (sprained MCL) still sidelined.

The Nets also have a host of guards who can soak up more playing time, including Patty Mills and Cam Thomas.

Ultimately, the Nets already faced a tough task on the road against the 36-13 Warriors, but stealing a win in San Francisco just got a whole lot tougher sans Harden.