Houston Rockets: Chris Paul Out Indefinitely with Strained Hamstring
Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni announced following Houston’s loss on Thursday to the Miami Heat 101-99 that Chris Paul would be out for an indefinite period after the point guard suffered a strained left hamstring.
Paul is to have an MRI Friday and D’Antoni would only say that his guard would be out for some time.
Paul had played just 12 minutes with four points scored before leaving the game with 6:43 remaining in the second quarter and the Rockets ahead 45-37.
The injury occurred as Paul dribbled to the right going behind his back with the ball near midcourt, and the ball was stolen away by Derrick Jones Jr. At that moment, Paul grabbed the back part of his left leg a common sign of an issue with the hamstring.
Paul went to the locker room immediately and did not return to the game and was gone prior to the room being opened to the media following the game.
The three playmakers the Rockets rely on have been Paul, James Harden, and Eric Gordon and Paul’s absence will mean more playing time for both Harden and Gordon and over time that will affect the quality of their games due to playing so many minutes.
Paul, who is 33, has struggled of late with his shot hitting only 34% of his shots over the last five games played, but his exceptional playmaking skills made him a big factor in Houston’s five-game winning streak during the same five games.
Paul strained his right hamstring during last season’s playoff and missed Game 6 and Game 7 of the Western Conference finals. Both games were lost by the Rockets to Golden State.
This season, when Paul has been out of the lineup, the Rockets are 0-5 with an average losing margin of 9.4 points per game.
This season Paul is averaging 15.6 points and 8.0 assists per game for Houston. The Rockets will host the San Antonio Spurs Saturday in their first game without Paul.