Thunder guard James Harden has been cleared to play in Game 1 of the Western Conference quarterfinals Saturday night against Dallas, six days after suffering a concussion from a vicious elbow delivered by the Lakers' Metta World Peace (Ron Artest). Harden talked to The Oklahoman on Thursday:
Q: How are you feeling?
A: “I'm doing good. Had a couple of days of working out, getting my groove back. Felt pretty good.”
What's this week been like?
“It's been kind of crazy. I've been just trying to relax and just doing what I have to do in order to get back on the court. Coaches, trainers, teammates have done a great job of keeping it within us and really focusing on what we have to do going into the playoffs.”
How bad were you hurt?
“Obviously, it hurt. Like I said, trainers did a good job of getting me back on the court as soon as possible.”
Has Artest apologized?
“I think he apologized in an interview. I don't know.”
How much do you remember of the incident?
“I remember the whole thing. I was shocked at first. Just try to get up and come back in the game. Obviously we've got the best training staff in the NBA, so they did a great job of not allowing that to happen.”
What was the biggest thing to overcome? Headaches?
“Little headaches. Like I said, the rest and being with those guys (trainers) in the back helped a lot.”