Tony Parker (hamstring) said he's 'ready' to play in Game 4 of the NBA Finals. (Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Getty Images)
Tony Parker won't let a strained hamstring keep him out of the NBA Finals.
Parker, who suffered a Grade 1 hamstring strain in the third quarter of the Spurs' Game 3 win, told reporters at shootaround Thursday morning that he "will be ready to go" for Game 4 of the NBA Finals, according to CBSSports.com and Yahoo! Sports.
Parker finished with six points (on 2-for-5 shooting) and eight assists in 27 minutes in Game 3 on Tuesday. He left the game early, but San Antonio held a large fourth-quarter lead en route to a 113-77 victory. The Spurs lead the Heat 2-1 entering Game 4.
Both the team and Parker were unsure whether he'd be available for Game 4. “Coach Pop always prefer the rest, to avoid injury,” Parker said Wednesday, after not practicing. “It’s an injury, and so we’ll see. We’ll see how I feel tomorrow. Talk with Pop. Obviously it’s the Finals, you know. I know Pop is always going to prefer we take no risk.”
Gregg Popovich has used a number of guards in his rotation during the postseason, and reserves Gary Neal and Cory Joseph both played more than 20 minutes in Game 3. Neal finished with six three-pointers and 24 points.
A five-time All-Star, Parker led the Spurs in scoring and assists in the regular season and that has continued in this year's postseason. The 31-year-old averaged 20.3 points and 7.6 assists in the regular season and is averaging 21.3 points and 7.1 assists in the playoffs.