It appears that neither the Golden State Warriors nor the Houston Rockets will be at full strength for game 7 of the Western Conference Finals.
Andre Iguodala has been ruled out for game 7 with a lateral left leg contusion. He has not played since game 3 of this series.
Iguodala exited game 3 after colliding knees with James Harden. The bruising has not subsided enough for Iguodala to be cleared for this crucial game 7.
Mike D’Antoni revealed in his pregame press conference that Chris Paul has been ruled out for game 7 as well. Paul missed game 6 after suffering a hamstring strain near the end of game 5.
During the press conference, D’Antoni indicated that they tried to test the hamstring out on the court and that Paul simply couldn’t push off it effectively.
This is obviously unfortunate news for not only the teams that rely on these players but also basketball fans around the world.
It’s a shame that the game that will ultimately determine the Western Conference representative for the NBA Finals will be missing such crucial players.
From the Rockets perspective, this is going to put a lot of pressure on James Harden to not only prolifically score, but also facilitate and create offensive opportunities for his teammates.
It seems a given for the Rockets chances of winning this game without Paul that Harden is going to need to put up a remarkable performance.
For the Warriors, they’ll miss Iguodala’s staunch perimeter defense as well as his passing skills on the offensive end.
The Warriors do have four other superstars, but it’s hard to understate the impact Iguodala makes on both ends of the court.
Teams can only play the lineup put in front of them, though. It’s too bad that Iguodala and Paul have been ruled out for game 7, but it will still be a compelling game regardless with a Finals appearance on the line.