James Harden will be on a minutes restriction if he plays

Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images
Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images /

Signs are pointing to the Beard playing on Thursday night in Houston.

James Harden has been out for the last couple of weeks after injuring his hamstring against the Lakers on December 31. It is finally looking like he’ll play next game.

Without Harden, the Rockets have gone 4-3 with losses to the Warriors and Wizards and most recently, the LA Clippers. Chris Paul and Gerald Green have been great, but the Beard is needed in H-Town.

If James returns tomorrow, it appears that he will be on a minutes restriction of around 25 minutes. He is questionable, though, and wants today’s practice to be a test of the hammy.

Here’s the tweet from Jonathan Feigen:

James Harden will be probable if no issues after return to practice, but with a munute restriction of likely 24, 25 minutes (tbd) D'Antoni said.

— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) January 17, 2018

I wonder how many minutes that will actually be if the game is close.

Harden at practice

Let’s look at a few things from the Rockets’ practice via Ben Dubose on Twitter. Follow him!

First, Harden seems rested and ready to play:

James Harden says his body feels as good as it can after 2.5 weeks off with a Grade 2 hamstring strain, but no guarantees on playing tomorrow until he gets through today’s #Rockets practice and sees how it responds: pic.twitter.com/JBCQlREk5v

— Ben DuBose (@BenDuBose) January 17, 2018

For a guy who’s never really missed significant time with an injury before, he seems quite ready to play. Hopefully, he gets the chance to do so tomorrow night against the Timberwolves. A rested and healthy James Harden could push the Rockets to a whole other level and might win him the MVP in the process.

Next, let’s get to the events that occurred after the game against the Clippers.

James Harden on Monday’s postgame events: “99 percent of [the reports] were false.” #Rockets pic.twitter.com/AKi6fOhVEK

— Ben DuBose (@BenDuBose) January 17, 2018

I wonder what the actual truth was. Whatever it is, that night on NBA Twitter was quite incredible.

It’s pretty great that James Harden is coming back to the squad. It seems like he took this time off to rest and focus on the goal for the Rockets: to win a championship. Knowing James Harden, that minutes restriction will be gone within a couple games.

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