The Bulls pulled off an incredible Game 3 victory over the Cavaliers, thanks to Derrick Rose banking home a three-pointer at the buzzer that put Chicago up 2-1 in the best-of-seven series.
Perhaps more remarkable was that they were able to do it with a very limited contribution from Pau Gasol.
Gasol finished with six points, four rebounds, four assists and three blocked shots, but left the game five minutes into the third quarter with a hamstring injury, and did not return. He’s set for an MRI on Saturday, and his status remains questionable for Sunday’s critical Game 4 contest.
“I have to do some tests, see how bad or good it is and then proceed from there,” Gasol said. “I’m just hoping that it’s not a bad tear or anything like that. Hamstrings are tricky and dangerous. Just hoping for the best and trying to stay positive.
“Hopefully I’ll get up [Saturday] with not much soreness and I’ll go to the hospital and do whatever it is I have to do to find out what I have.”
“Early in the first quarter, it started to tighten up,” Gasol said. “It really bothered me. I thought it was going to loosen up and I was going to be able to push through it. The more I pushed through it, the worse it got.”
Losing Gasol would be damaging, but the Bulls are a deep squad that may be able to survive his absence.
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Taj Gibson and Nikola Mirotic can provide at least some of what Gasol brings; they combined for 21 points and 17 rebounds in Game 3, while each playing around 22 minutes off the bench.