Josh Hart joins long list of Knicks injuries ahead of Game 7

May 17, 2024; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Indiana Pacers guard Andrew Nembhard (2) shoots the ball while New York Knicks guard Josh Hart (3) defends during game six of the second round for the 2024 NBA playoffs at Gainbridge Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

New York Knicks F Josh Hart suffered an abdominal injury during New York’s 116-103 loss to the Indiana Pacers in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals. With the series now tied at 3-3, Hart’s status for Game 7 could have a major impact on the Knicks chances.

Josh Hart’s injury the latest addition to long list of Knicks injuries

May 6, 2024; New York, New York, USA; Indiana Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton (0) controls the ball against New York Knicks guard Josh Hart (3) during the fourth quarter of game one of the second round of the 2024 NBA playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
May 6, 2024; New York, New York, USA; Indiana Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton (0) controls the ball against New York Knicks guard Josh Hart (3) during the fourth quarter of game one of the second round of the 2024 NBA playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Hart suffered the injury early in the first quarter but would remain in the game and play 31 minutes. Clearly hampered, Hart finished with just five points, eight rebounds, and three assists.

Hart now joins F Julius Randle (shoulder), F OG Anunoby (hamstring), F Bojan Bogdanovic (wrist, ankle), and C Mitchell Robinson (ankle) as the Knicks continue to be pummeled by the injury bug. If Hart can’t go in Game 7, the Knicks will have to win the most significant game they’ve played in the last 25 years without one of their most important players.

Hart has stepped up during New York’s playoff run

The versatile forward has stepped up tremendously for the Knicks in the postseason. Averaging 14.9 points, and an impressive 11.8 rebounds per game. Additionally, Hart has knocked down 40% of his three-pointers, a nine percent increase from his regular season mark of 31%.

Prior to Game 6, Hart was averaging 40.4 minutes per game in the series against Indiana, including playing all 48 minutes in Games 1 and 2. Hart has played under 40 minutes in the Knicks last three games, logging just 24 minutes in Game 4, 39 minutes in Game 5, and just 31 minutes last night in Game 6.

Hart’s teammates feel strongly about his Game 7 status

As of now, there is no official word on Hart’s status for Game 7. However, the general sense around the Knicks locker room is that Hart will be available.

“He’ll do whatever to play,” said Knicks C Isaiah Hartenstein. “If his leg’s not falling off…he’ll probably play.”

G Jalen Brunson reiterated Hartenstein’s sentiments.

“I would assume he’s playing,” said Brunson. “It’s Game 7.”

The ever-so-shorthanded Knicks will have their chance to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals in Game 7 on Sunday. With OG Anunoby unlikely to play, the Knicks might not be able to afford to have Hart sit out. It’s do-or-die time for the Knicks, and whether they have Hart or not, Sunday is undoubtedly the most important game the Knicks have played since their last Conference Finals appearance in 2000.

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