David Lee channeled his inner Willis Reed in Game 6 against the Nuggets, playing with a torn hip flexor after being ruled out for the playoffs. Lee spent just a minute on the court and missed his only shot attempt, so the comparisons to Reed’s performance over 40 years ago can stop right there.
However, he may be playing “more meaningful minutes” against the Spurs in the second round, head coach Mark Jackson told the Contra Costa Times.
“It depends on how he’s feeling and what the doctors and training staff and everybody else says about it,” Jackson said. “But he’s excited about it, and if he’s healthy, and he can give us something, I will certainly utilize those minutes properly.”
The power forward suffered the injury in Game 1 against the Nuggets, and an an MRI today revealed the tear in his hip flexor.
Lee has had an absolute monster season with the Warriors, averaging 18 points and 11 rebounds in the regular season. However, the team has been doing fine without him, with Carl Landry and Draymond Green filling in nicely.
“I’m going to do my best [to play],” Lee told HoopsWorld after the Warriors clinched the first round series over Denver. “We’ll just have to see what this break brings. If I’m feeling the same way I am tonight, it’s going to be difficult to expect much. But it’s already come so far in a few days, I think it can be even better by the time we play San Antonio.”
Game 1 will be played on Monday in San Antonio, with tip off scheduled for 6:30 PST.