HOUSTON (CBS Houston) – Jeremy Lin may have lost his starting job to Patrick Beverley, according to Coach Kevin McHale. Lin, who missed Game 4 due to a chest contusion and has not practiced all week, was slated to be a game-time decision for Wednesday’s Game 5 in Oklahoma City. In an interview during practice, McHale said that if Lin does play, he may be playing off the bench.
“If he is ready to play, it will be more spot stuff, trying to bring him off the bench and spot and give guys rest and see how he does,” McHale said Wednesday.
Beverley has garnered the hatred of Thunder fans and even a death threat after he collided with Russell Westbrook, resulting in a torn meniscus in his knee and eliminating Westbrook from the playoffs. Coach McHale said the Rockets are prepared for the cold reception in Oklahoma City.
“In the famous words of Bill Walton, ‘if they are cheering you in the opposing gym, then you are doing something wrong.’ I don’t think they’ll be cheering so we must be doing something right.”
In other player news, James Harden missed practice with cold-like symptoms but is expected to play tonight.
Omer Asik is receiving treatments for his back which was ailing him in Game 4, despite scoring 17 points in the Rockets’ 105-103 win over OKC.
The Rockets, down 3-1 in the series, will try to keep their playoff hopes alive Wednesday night. Game 5 is scheduled for tip-off at 8:30 CT in Oklahoma City.