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Jalen Brunson on Josh Hart, New York Knicks injuries: ‘Add it to the list’ | Sporting News

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The already-short-handed New York Knicks may have suffered another setback.

Knicks forward Josh Hart appeared to suffer an abdominal injury
in the Knicks’ Game 6 loss to the Indiana Pacers
. Hart suffered the injury in the first quarter and was in and out of the game over the next two periods. He was ruled out for good in the fourth quarter with what the Knicks called “abdominal soreness.”

It’s been a brutal season of injuries for the Knicks. Entering Game 6, they were already without Julius Randle, Bojan Bogdanovic (who got hurt in Game 4 of the first-round series), Mitchell Robinson (who was ruled out after Game 1 against the Pacers), and OG Anunoby, who strained his hamstring in Game 2 and has been day-to-day since.

All season long, the Knicks have shrugged off these injuries, repeating the same mantra: they have more than enough to win. Both Tom Thibodeau and Donte DiVincenzo used that line following Game 6.

However, Jalen Brunson on Friday ceded that the Knicks have had extraordinarily bad luck this postseason when it comes to health. Asked about Hart’s injury, Brunson said “add it to the list.”

“I wasn’t necessarily worried or anything [about Hart], but I guess you can just add it to the list,” Brunson said.

It may not seem like much, but it’s as close to an admission that the Knicks are reeling as they have given all season.

“There’s been a lot of things, obviously, [that] physically don’t go our way with our team this year,” Brunson said. “But I think our main focus is that whoever we have out there, regardless of what you’re dealing with or anything, if you’re out there, you’re ready to go. That’s just been our mindset.”

Brunson has embodied that mindset as well as any Knick this series. Brunson suffered an apparent foot injury in Game 2 and was said to be experiencing foot soreness over the following two games. Despite poor performances in Games 3 and 4, Brunson insisted that if he’s playing, he’s healthy.

Still, if Hart is limited or misses Game 7, it may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back for the Knicks. Hart has been a monster rebounder for the Knicks this postseason (12.2 per game) while filling in on scoring, playing physical defense, and making intangible hustle plays each game.

The Knicks do have one advantage going for them heading into Game 7: Madison Square Garden
.

It’s been nearly 30 years since the Knicks’ last Game 7 at home
, but in a series where the home team has won every game, a raucous home crowd might be enough to push the Knicks across the finish line.

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