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James Harden 2021 questionable. Blake Griffin out vs. Jazz

James Harden 2021  questionable. Blake Griffin out vs. Jazz

James Harden 2021 questionable. Blake Griffin out vs. Jazz

James Harden James Harden questionable, Jazz Blake out Griffin vs.

Wed, 24 Mar 2021 10:00:00 -0700

When the Brooklyn Nets face the Utah Jazz tonight, they may not have any of their Big Three and will definitely be missing their newest addition

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The Nets have 

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Blake Griffin and James Harden both played in Tuesday’s win against the Blazers.

When the Brooklyn Nets face the Utah Jazz tonight, they may not have any of their Big Three and will definitely be missing their newest addition.

The Nets have listed star guard James Harden as questionable due to neck soreness while forward Blake Griffin — who made his Brooklyn debut on Monday — will miss the game.

Griffin and Harden both played in Tuesday’s 116-112 win against the Portland Trail Blazers.

The Nets say James Harden (neck soreness) is questionable and Blake Griffin (left knee – injury management) is out for tonight’s game at Utah.

— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) March 24, 2021

Griffin will miss the game due to injury-management reasons for his left knee and so he doesn’t play the second night of back-to-back games.

He came off the bench vs.

Portland, finishing with eight points, five rebounds and two steals.

Harden finished with 25 points, seven rebounds and 17 assists.

Harden said after the win against the Blazers that he nearly sat out that game because of a sore neck.

But Harden, who has played more games than anyone in the NBA since entering the league in 2009 with 871, takes great pride in being available for his team.

”That’s just who I am, that’s just how I’m built,” Harden said.

”If this thing was done tomorrow, I know I gave everything I had.

I know I didn’t shortcut at any point.

It will be over one day but me in the back of my mind knowing, I have peace knowing I did that.

I can live with that.”

This season, Harden leads the Nets in scoring (25.4 ppg) and assists (11.5) while shooting 46.8% overall and 36.2% on 3-pointers.

Brooklyn is already shorthanded as Kyrie Irving (who is missing the Nets’ three-game road trip due to a personal matter) and Kevin Durant (recovering from a hamstring injury) are both out of the lineup.

The Jazz have the NBA’s best record at 31-11, but the Nets have been right on their tail — especially since Harden joined the Brooklyn’s roster.

Since Jan.

16 (when Harden made his Brooklyn debut), the Nets are 23-8 — a mark bested only by the Jazz’s 23-7 record.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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James Harden James Harden

Wed, 24 Mar 2021 10:00:00 -0700

James Harden had every reason not to play against the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday

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Not only did Kevin Durant (hamstring) and Kyrie Irivng (personal 

James Harden had every reason not to play against the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday.

Not only did Kevin Durant (hamstring) and Kyrie Irivng (personal reasons) miss the game, but Harden sustained a neck injury two nights prior — a scary moment entering halftime of Sunday’s matchup against the Wizards.

The Nets easily could have punted an otherwise meaningless game in Portland and rested Harden both as a precaution and a much-needed break.

“(I was) very close (to not playing) actually,” Harden said.

“Just not able to really be myself, but tonight I showed just my full range of motion.

A little bit of everything.

But no excuses.

I tried to fight.

My team needs me, and I just go out there and do my best, and hopefully that was enough.”

It turns out the Nets couldn’t stop Harden from playing even if they wanted to.

“The Beard” played through discomfort to post 25 points and 17 assists and powered the Nets to their 16th win in 18 games.

And the word “hooper” might be written in invisible ink on his forehead.

Harden has been one of the NBA’s most durable superstars.

He appeared in 841 of the 886 possible regular season games entering this season and has only missed one game since his Jan.

13 trade to Brooklyn.

More than his durability is his willingness to play no matter the opponent or schedule.

In an era of stars managing their load, Harden is shouldering one, and he’s doing it with joy.

“I love to hoop.

I love to be out there and taking on the challenge of finding ways to win games,” Harden said.

“In basketball, everything isn’t gonna be perfect.

Whether you’re playing through injuries or playing banged up, I just think in life, everything isn’t always gonna be perfect, so you find ways to fight through adversity.

Obviously, when you’re hurt, you’re hurt.

You sit out.

But I try to find a way to just go out there and make an impact and play if I’m able to, if I’m not risking anything, if that makes sense.

And that’s how I’ve been throughout the course of my career.

“Throughout the regular season, I think everybody knows I love to play.

I don’t really rest.

I love to hoop,” Harden continued.

“I love to be out there and be there for my teammates.

I feel like if I’m on the court, my teammates have a better chance of winning.

So that’s just my mindset.

Tomorrow when I wake up, if I feel like I can go, I’m gonna go.

It’s just that simple.”

Harden has played more games than any other player in the 2009 NBA Draft class.

He is a handful of games ahead of the Spurs’ DeMar DeRozan, the Knicks’ Taj Gibson and the Hawks’ Jeff Teague, who have each played more than 800 games.

For Harden, his durability and will to compete are a method of pushing himself to new heights.

“That’s just how I am.

That’s just how I’m built,” he said.

“If this thing was to be done tomorrow and I wasn’t able to play basketball anymore I know that I gave everything I had.

I know I didn’t short-cut myself in any way at any point.

So that’s just my mentality and that’s where I am.

“And I enjoy the grind, the legs a little tired, not feeling so well and going out there and just finding a way to win the game.

And tonight I felt like that was one of those examples.”

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– March 24, 2021

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