According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, Kendrick Perkins played the last three rounds of the playoffs with a partially torn groin. An injury he sustained in Game 4 against the Mavericks in the opening round.
Perk sat the remainder of that game, but returned to start the rest of the postseason. His injury was labeled as just a hip strain, but clearly there was something more. He’s expected to have offseason surgery on it.
Naturally the question is, then why the crap did he play so much? Especially considering the matchup didn’t make much sense, and Scott Brooks had a built in excuse to sit or not start him. Why? WHY????
I’m a big Perk fan, because I appreciate the value he has in doing his job. He defends post scorers, is a tough dude, screens well and adds a whole lot to the team in terms of leadership. I tried to warn everyone that you’d complain about him during the Spurs series and then the Miami series. He doesn’t play well in space, and that’s what he was forced to do. He performed admirably in the last few games against the Spurs, but never did find much impact against the Heat.
I would imagine it was at Perk’s command that he stay in the lineup and credit to him for not using it as an excuse or complaining. But at the same time, you have to look at if it’s hurting the team. I respect the heck out of Perk for playing through an injury, but if he wasn’t 100 percent, does that help or hurt?
Scott Brooks likes to say if you’re on the floor, you’re healthy in his mind. While I see the idea, that’s obviously not true at all. If you’re not healthy, you’re not at your best. Playing through injury is one thing, but not when it potentially hurts the production of the team.
There wasn’t anything obvious in The Finals with Perk’s health and with the way he performed later in the Spurs series certainly didn’t hint at anything. He battled valiantly, but knowing this now, it makes you wonder.