The Memphis Grizzlies are not winning Game 7 without point guard Mike Conley.
He’s too important to their defense on Russell Westbrook. He’s also too important to their ability to control the tempo of the game, take care of the ball and not turn the game into a track meet with the athletic Thunder.
Conley tweaked his right hamstring in the third quarter of the Thunder’s Game 6 win in Memphis (which forced Saturday’s Game 7). He went back to the locker room when it happened, came back out and tried to give it a go, but said after the game he couldn’t push off or really run, so he sat back down for the rest of the game.
Conley said in a televised interview after the game he planned to get treatment — ice, stimulation machines — and he hoped to be ready for Game 7. But hamstring injury can be tricky things, ones slow to heal properly heal. There just isn’t time for that now.
Coach Dave Joerger is hopeful Conley can play, reports Anthony Slater of the Oklahoman.
No Conley means a lot of Beno Udrih, which would be a big step down in quality for Memphis.
Expect updates on Conley’s status the next 48 hours up until Game 7. You can bet he tries to play, but just how effective can he really be?