Apr 24, 2013; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Houston Rockets guard Jeremy Lin (7) handles the ball against Oklahoma City Thunder guard Kevin Martin (23) in the first half during game two of the first round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports
After leaving game 2 at the start of the second half, Houston Rockets guard Jeremy Lin was seen grimacing in pain as he walked towards the tunnel. Lin suffered a right chest contusion, and X-Rays taken were negative. His status for game 3 Saturday night is unknown, but Lin is hoping to play, with the Rockets down 0-2 to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Lin received treatment on his chest during the second half, but was unable to run and did not return to the bench for the conclusion of the contest. He expressed his frustration with the injury after the game (via the Houston Chronicle):
“This is easily the most frustrating thing that’s happened this entire season,” Lin said. “I’ve been healthy all season. The second half of a playoff game, on the road, we’re playing well, Game 2, it’s just … yeah, it speaks for itself.”
“I don’t know who I ran into,” Lin said. “I hit somebody. I thought it would be OK. I came back in for halftime. I put some heat on there and tried to run and couldn’t really run. They’re just saying X-rays are negative. I’ll come in tomorrow and get some treatment.”
Lin has struggled so far in the series against the Thunder. He scored four points on 1-7 shooting in Game 1, and then put up seven points on 3-7 shooting over 20 minutes in Game 2 before exiting with the injury.
Update: 3:10 PM CST
MRI confirms that Lin has suffered a bruised chest, and is listed as day-to-day according to TNT’s David Aldridge.
Update: Friday 9:39 AM CST
On Thursday evening, Lin said that his bruised chest feels a lot better.
“It feels a lot better,” said Lin. “The worst part was the spasm-ing. That’s gone now. Now it’s just getting range of motion and getting pain free. I can’t shoot today. We tried to do the shooting motion just to get range of motion. Right now I have range of motion, but I don’t think I had any force.”
Lin is optimistic for Saturday night’s game 3, but isn’t making any promises.
“I’m not going to make any promises or anything because I just don’t know,” he said. “Tomorrow we’re going to work on some more stuff. Today was all range of motion. Tomorrow will hopefully be some jumping. And we’ll go from there. See how it responds tomorrow. I really don’t know. This is something that should heal quickly. I’m not there yet. I don’t know when I will be. Hopefully, soon.”
Update: Friday 9:00 PM CST
Lin did not practice on Friday, and continues to be listed as day-to-day. Chances are that he will be a game time decision Saturday night.
Update: Saturday 1:20 PM CST
Lin stated in shootaround that he was feeling much better. The Rockets will make a game-time decision on whether Lin is good to go or not.
Update: 8:05 PM CST
Kevin McHale has stated that Lin will play.
“He’s up shooting and getting loosened up,” McHale said. “I think he’s going to give it a shot.”
This would let the Rockets start the game with their small line up that they went with to start game 2, with Patrick Beverley and Lin in the back court, while James Harden, Chandler Parsons, and Omer Asik stack the front court.