The Brooklyn Nets are up 1-0 in their Eastern Conference semifinals best-of-seven series against the Milwaukee Bucks after they pulled out a 115-107. In a sick twist of fate, James Harden needed to leave the game with an injury to his right hamstring, which was exactly the same injury that forced him to miss two losses to the Bucks back in May.
His injury came in the first minute of the game, but, Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving didn't let it phase them and combined for 54 points and the win in Game 1.
"That was tough," Nets coach Steve Nash said in reference to Harden. He will not play in Game 2 due to hamstring tightness and the Nets have not said when he will return but Game 3 might be an option.
The Nets saw a huge night from Joe Harris who had 19 points, and, Blake Griffin who really turned it up with 18 points and 14 rebounds.
"We try not to be too emotional out there, but losing one of your leaders like that on the first play of the game, we had to regroup for a couple of minutes and figure out what was next, but I think the coaches, the coaching staff did a great job of moving forward," Durant commented. "Guys came in and just tried to play extremely hard. We didn't care about anything else but playing and executing the game plan and just leaving it all out there."
The Bucks were not happy with their performance although Giannis Antetokounmpo had 34 points and 11 rebounds. Milwaukee shot terribly from beyond the arc going just 6 for 30.
NBA Playoff Odds
The Nets are in fact the favorite tonight, even with the Harden injury. At bet365 Sports, the Bucks are at 2.00 and the Nets are at 1.83 for the outright win.
The odds in this article at the bookmaker mentioned above were accurate at the time of writing on June 7 at 9:45 GMT.