OKLAHOMA CITY – Following the Dallas Mavericks’ shootaround this morning at Chesapeake Energy Arena, Deron Williams walked away not knowing if his sports hernia will allow him to play in tonight’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
"I’ll see how it feels tonight,’’ Williams said. "It’s definitely frustrating – it’s the playoffs.’’
Williams played 22 minutes, scored two points and distributed three assists on Saturday, when the Thunder blew out the Mavs, 108-70, in Game 1 of this best-of-seven first-round playoff series. Game 2 is at 7 tonight at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
So how did Williams, who is doubtful to play tonight, manage the pain he had to endure in the series opener against the Thunder?
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"I got a shot in the first quarter and that helped a little bit, but not really,’’ he said. "It was pretty bad.
"I don’t know if I really managed it. I was 1 for (nine from the field), I couldn’t get by anybody, I couldn’t really sprint up and down the court, so I don’t if I was helping that much.’’
And not being bale to help that much is what bothers Williams. So much so that he has to wonder if resting for a game may be better than risking further injury.
"I just don’t know if sitting out one game is going to be enough,’’ Williams said. "It’s not really that I can damage myself any further.
"I think it’s just more of can I be effective out there, or am I helping the team more than I’m hurting the team, so that’s kind of where my mind is right now. I don’t want to be out there and we’re playing four-on-five. I have to be able to go and be able to be what my team needs me to be.’’
Williams was the Mavs’ second-leading scorer with year with 14.1 points per game, and also averaged a team-high 5.8 assists. But he missed eight games down the stretch while dealing with his sports hernia, and that injury is still having an impact on his ability to perform.
"I’ve never really dealt with an injury in the playoffs where it’s affecting me playing this much, so it’s definitely frustrating,’’ Williams said. "But it is what it is and it’s kind of what I have to deal with right now.’’