Why Is Brooklyn Nets’ James Harden Not Playing Against the Los Angeles Lakers Tonight?

Published 04/10/2021, 7:21 PM EDT
Feb 9, 2021; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden (13) gets defended by Detroit Pistons guard Wayne Ellington (8) during the second quarter at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports


The Brooklyn Nets face the defending champions Los Angeles Lakers in a mouth watering clash tonight. Given the number of superstars both the teams have, on paper this seems to be a must-watch.

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But today’s games sees some of the biggest names out with injuries. While the Lakers are missing Anthony Davis and LeBron James, the Nets see one of their biggest trade acquisitions, James Harden missing from the lineup. So why is James Harden not playing tonight’s game?

James Harden’s latest injury

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Ever since his trade to the Brooklyn Nets, James Harden has been on a tear. The 2018 MVP has transformed himself into the team’s primary facilitator and has carried the team to multiple victories.

Not only that, he has probably been the most consistent among the big three of Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and himself. While KD and Kyrie had endured some injuries, Harden hadn’t and played majority of the games for the team.

Mar 1, 2021; San Antonio, Texas, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden (13) dribbles in the second half against the San Antonio Spurs at the AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Dunn-USA TODAY Sports

After suffering from a rather scary neck injury a couple of weeks ago, Harden was back at it and was playing some great basketball alongside Kyrie. But the 32-year-old suffered a hamstring injury while facing off against the Rockets.

While the Nets were being careful keeping him out for the next two games, ‘the Beard‘ certainly trusted himself. In a crucial matchup against the New York Knicks, Harden tried to make a comeback, but within the four minutes on court, he was out of the game.

He is now scheduled to be assessed within the next 10 days and unfortunately ruled out for at least the next two games with a hamstring strain.

How the latest injury to James Harden might affect the Brooklyn Nets?

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The Nets have a pretty stacked roster and can surely have multiple victories in the side, but this injury to Harden might affect them in the post-season. Brooklyn has seen their big three play only seven games together.

Feb 13, 2021; San Francisco, California, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden (13) talks with forward Kevin Durant (7) during a free throw attempt by the Nets against the Golden State Warriors in the third quarter at the Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

While KD is back now, if Harden would have been fit, the big three could have built some much-needed chemistry within themselves. If this injury does mean Haden missing more time, it might affect the team’s chemistry, which might hurt their chances in the post-season.

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With time running out, the Nets only have a handful of games to get all their pieces working efficiently. Will James Harden be back in time for the Nets?

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Aditya Mohapatra

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Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News, and has been writing for EssentiallySports since November 2020. This die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan feels that LeBron James is the best thing to have ever happened to the NBA, and will hold a healthy debate with anyone suggesting otherwise.

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