Tom Thibodeau Offers 3 Words on OG Anunoby’s Game 7 Status for Knicks

Tom Thibodeau, OG Anunoby

Getty OG Anunoby and Tom Thibodeau celebrate during an April 8 game against the Chicago Bulls.

For the first time in almost 20 years, the New York Knicks are hosting a Game 7 at Madison Square Garden. But whether or not that will feature OG Anunoby remains up in the air.

After losing Game 6 to the Indiana Pacers, Knicks’ head coach Tom Thibodeau was asked about Anunoby’s chances to return for Game 7.

“Whatever medical says,” he told reporters postgame.

And when asked to elaborate on what the medical staff is saying, Thibodeau simply responded “day-to-day.”

Anunoby, who’s been out since Game 2 of the series, is dealing with a left hamstring strain. He’s averaging 16.4 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.1 blocks, and 1 steal per game in the playoffs.

New York is 6-2 when he plays this postseason, and 1-3 when he doesn’t.

It’s safe to say his potential return will be monitored by both sides, as a potential x-factor for Game 7 on May 19.

But until something breaks on the injury front, the Knicks will have to assume they’re going into the elimination game with exactly who they left Game 6 with.

That could mean they’re without Josh Hart, too.


Knicks React to Josh Hart Injury

A shorthanded rotation for New York takes another hit, with Hart’s status for Game 7 now up in the air too.

The do-it-all forward and consistent playoff performer suffered an abdominal strain in Game 6 that ended his night prematurely.

Hart was ruled out with what the Knicks say is “abdominal soreness.”

When asked about Hart’s status postgame, Thibodeau was uncommitted, without an update.

“We’ll see,” the head coach told reporters.

Donte DiVincenzo is just embracing the challenge. One that’s been consistent for New York all season.

“Obviously you never want to see anybody get hurt,” DiVincenzo told SNY postgame. “But it’s been our season. We have more than enough, whoever’s on the court. I’ve said it 100 times. Whatever five is on the court, we have a blueprint here. Thibs demands certain things from certain guys. And you go out there, you compete your tails off. And you give yourselves a chance to win. So that’s our mindset, whether he goes or not. That’s our mindset.”

Jalen Brunson was more optimistic, saying the nature of Game 7 makes Hart’s status less uncertain. “I would assuming he’s playing,” Brunson told reporters on May 17. “It’s Game 7.”

Miles McBride kept the same optimism, even saying that Hart is already on the mend.

“He seems like he’s feeling better now,” McBride told SNY postgame. “I’m not sure about the whole situation, but obviously for a guy like that, you know, pretty tough, asking out is not a good sign. But I think he’ll bounce back.”

Starting center Isaiah Hartenstein is confident Hart will do whatever it takes to play in Game 7.

“I mean, just knowing him, I didn’t talk to him or know the situation right now, but just knowing him, he’ll do whatever to play,” Hartenstein told SNY. “If his leg’s not falling off, I can probably say that he’ll probably play. I haven’t talked to him yet. But we’ll see.”

Hart’s averaging 14.9 points, 11.8 rebounds, and 4.5 assists in the playoffs.

He leads the NBA in minutes played this postseason with 511.2, and played in 81 of 82 regular season games.

His status will be another major storyline for a team that’s already down Anunoby, Bojan Bogdanovic, Julius Randle, and Mitchell Robinson.


Wojnarowski: Anunoby ‘Would Be Out’ for Game 7

Ahead of the Game 6 matchup, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski provided an update on Anunoby on an episode of NBA Countdown.

“The Knicks are going to have to beat Indiana in this series without OG Anunoby,” Wojnarowski reported on the May 17 episode. “I’m told he would also be out for a Game 7 with that hamstring. And if the Knicks could somehow advance in this series, then you start looking at could he be available for Game 1 Tuesday in Boston.”

That was before the Knicks lost Game 6. Before they’re backs were really pushed against the wall. The medical staff will have to clear Anunoby, but it’s less of a certainty that he’s out for Game 7 with a win-or-go home situation now reality for New York.

The same can be said for Hart.

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