The Houston Rockets will be without one of their key role players for the rest of the postseason. The team announced Monday that backup center Nene suffered a torn left adductor in Sunday’s Game 4 victory over the San Antonio Spurs.
Nene, 34, averaged 9.1 points and 4.2 rebounds in 17.9 minutes per game during the regular season. He was even more productive during the playoffs, averaging 10.0 points and 4.7 rebounds in 17.9 minutes per game.
With Nene out for the remainder of the playoffs, however, the Rockets will be forced to go to a smaller lineup with Eric Gordon likely starting and Ryan Anderson coming off the bench as a backup center. Anderson, though, has struggled so far in the playoffs. After averaging 13.6 points while shooting 41.8 percent from the floor and 40.3 percent from behind the arc during the regular season, Anderson is averaging 9.3 points while shooting 38.7 percent from the floor and 28 percent from behind the arc in the postseason.
Nene was not only effective in his role but consistent, something Anderson is not right now. It will be interesting to see how the lack of depth at the center position affects the Rockets going forward.