Bulls’ Kirk Hinrich out for Game 5 vs. Nets
BY SEAN JENSEN firstname.lastname@example.org April 29, 2013 9:42AM
Updated: April 29, 2013 6:37PM
NEW YORK – Bulls starting point guard Kirk Hinrich will not play in Game 5 against the Brooklyn Nets tonight at the Barclays Center because of a left calf injury.
Hinrich, who played a game-high 59 minutes in Saturday’s triple-overtime Bulls win, arrived at his team’s morning practice with a black walking boot on his left foot. He said he couldn’t put any weight on it this morning.
Asked about missing Game 5, Hinrich said, “Anytime it’s hard, but especially in the playoffs, because that’s what you look forward to all year.
“It’s going to be hard to sit out and watch.”
The question is for how long.
If the Bulls, who lead the series 3-1, win tonight, they’ll turn their attention to the Miami Heat, which swept the Milwaukee Bucks Sunday. The first game against the Heat would in Miami, most likely on Saturday.
If the Bulls lose, though, they’ll return to the United Center for Game 6 Thursday night. If the Nets win that one, then Game 7 will be at the Barclays Center on Saturday.
Asked when he could return, Hinrich said, “I don’t know.
“I wish I could tell you. Treat it like crazy, do what they tell me to do. Hopefully I don’t have to sit out more than one game.”
Hinrich said he suffered the injury in the first half and admitted it was “definitely bother me the whole second half.”
“But the fact that I didn’t stop, I was able to keep moving. It just went downhill after the game and overnight,” he said.
What does the injury prevent him from doing on the court?
“It’s everything. It’s preventing me from walking right now,” he said. “So I’m going to stay after it with the medical staff, treatments around the clock, and hopefully it’ll improve.”
Hinrich said he didn’t make the injury worse by playing the second half and three overtimes. He finished the Bulls’ 142-134 victory with 18 points, 14 assists, four rebounds and three steals.
Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau wouldn’t say who would start in Hinrich’s place. But the most likely bet is Nate Robinson, who scored a game-high 34 points Saturday.
Thibodeau also ruled Derrick Rose out for tonight’s game.
“Everyone else is good,” he said.
Hinrich has been a standout in this series, both running the point and playing defense on Nets All-Star Deron Williams. But Thibodeau said the Bulls can still close out the Nets tonight.
“It’s what he’s done all year,” he said. “The way he runs the team, he’s a two-way player, plays great defense, knows how to run the team, great leader. He’s had a terrific season for us, but we also feel like we have more than enough to win here.’’