Kevin Durant, James Harden survive injury scares after Durant elbows Harden in head
The early minutes of Monday’s Western Conference semifinal Game 4 provided fan bases of both teams with some stressful moments.
Houston Rockets guard James Harden attacked the basket on a fast break for a layup attempt. Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant trailed on the play for a block at the rim that left both players reeling during the ensuing Warriors break.
Harden went to the floor on the play, clutching his head in pain. Durant failed to run the break, remaining under the basket clutching his right elbow.
TNT cuts to commercial with both players ailing
At the ensuing stoppage in play, the status of both ailing players was in question as TNT took a commercial break.
Thankfully for both teams, when the action started on the other side of the break both players were on the court. Replay showed that Durant made contact to the back of Harden’s head with his elbow on the play.
But both former league MVPs appeared to escape without serious injury.
Harden takes brief locker room trip
Harden left for the locker room later in the first quarter, but returned to the bench after a short hiatus and re-entered the game before the quarter was over, quelling any concerns that he might enter concussion protocol.
It was reminiscent of Game 2, when Harden and Stephen Curry both left early in the game with injuries. Harden suffered a lacerated eyelid when Draymond Green scraped him across the face.
Curry suffered a dislocated left middle finger that required it to be taped. Both players missed time before returning to that game.
The Rockets held off a late fourth-quarter rally from Golden State in Game 4 to win 112-108, leveling the series at 2-2.
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