James Harden to miss next 2 Rockets games with hamstring strain

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James Harden will miss the next two Houston Rockets games after he was taken out of Wednesday's loss vs. Utah with a hamstring strain.

An MRI on Thursday revealed Harden has a Grade 1 strain in his left hamstring, according to the team.

Harden will miss two home games: Friday's contest vs. the Los Angeles Clippers and Tuesday's game vs. the Portland Trail Blazers. He is expected to be re-evaluated before the Rockets embark on a five-game road trip starting on Nov. 2.

The Rockets also announced James Ennis suffered a Grade 2 right hamstring strain during Sunday's game vs. the Clippers and will similarly miss two games.

Harden was kept out of practice Thursday after leaving Wednesday night's game with tightness in the hamstring in the fourth quarter.

Harden scored 29 points Wednesday night in the 100-89 defeat that dropped the Rockets to 1-3 before heading to the locker room with just more than five minutes remaining.

Harden missed seven games last season with a Grade 2 hamstring strain and said after the game this was not the same type of injury.

"It's nothing serious. Nothing serious," he said. "It's not close to last year. Just being cautious."

"Long-term not concerned because he'll get over it ... (but) I'm concerned about trying to win in the meantime," D'Antoni said. "But we've got enough guys and we've got to hold serve and we've got to play better. Whether he's in or not, we're just not playing very well."

The Rockets will get a boost with the return of Chris Paul, who missed the last two games serving a suspension for his role in a fight with Lakers' player Rajon Rondo.

"It was tough," he said. "But I did my time."

Paul, who wasn't allowed on the bench with the team during his suspension, watched Wednesday night's game at home with his family.

"It was real strange. Let's try and hope that doesn't happen again. It costs too much," said Paul of the suspension that cost him $491,782.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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