For as much star power as the Nets boast with a roster overflowing with All-Stars, something else stole the spotlight in the regular season — and has continued to follow Brooklyn in the postseason.
They’ve battered the Nets’ Big Three of Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving throughout the 2020-21 campaign. Thanks to injuries, the trio played only eight games together in the regular season after the team traded for Harden in January.
It’s been a similar story in the playoffs. In Brooklyn’s second-round series against the Milwaukee Bucks, Harden has missed three games as he’s battled through hamstring tightness, and Irving has sat multiple contents with a sprained ankle and has also been ruled out for Saturday’s Game 7.
Ahead of that do-or-die game at Barclays Center, another key Nets player revealed he’s also still fighting through something.
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Jeff Green Says He’s Still Fighting Injury
Jeff Green had a Game 5 for the ages, nailing seven 3-pointers in a 27-point performance that helped lift the Nets to a 114-108 win. Green couldn’t replicate that magic in Game 6. He managed only five points in 35 minutes as Brooklyn lost by 16.
Could an injury have impacted Green’s performance?
It appears that’s at least a possibility as Green on Saturday morning revealed he’s still fighting injury.
“Everybody is in pain at this time of the season,” Green said, per Ajayi Browne of Nets Daily. “I’m dealing with something and it is what it is.”
Green, a 34-year-old forward, suffered a strained plantar fascia in Brooklyn’s first-round series against the Boston Celtics, forcing him to miss the majority of that series. He also missed the first three games of the Bucks series.
Asked about his foot pain, Green said he’s able to play and that’s the most important thing to him, per Alex Schiffer of The Athletic.
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Green Has High Hopes for Kevin Durant in Game 7
With Irving out and Harden playing at something less than 100 percent, the Nets have leaned on Durant to tote the load against the dangerous Bucks.
In Game 5, Durant delivered with a historic performance, becoming the first player in NBA postseason history with a 45-point, 15-round, 10-assist game. Durant then had 32 points and 11 rebounds in Game 6, but it wasn’t nearly enough.
“He’s been carrying us,” Green said of Durant ahead of Game 7, per Schiffer, “and I believe tonight (Saturday) will be no different. He’s going to play his heart out and put us on his back and lead us to the win.”
Green added: “We’re all excited. It’s rare that a lot of people play in Game sevens,” per Schiffer.
As for one of the keys to winning Game 7 to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals?
“The fans,” Green said, per Browne. “Just in general, the fans give the home team a boost — I believe that’s the key.”