J.J. Barea was ruled out for Game 1 at halftime with the groin strain that cost him two of the Mavericks' final three games of the season.
Rick Carlisle inserted Barea into the starting lineup to begin Saturday's game, but the pesky Mavericks guard scored just two points on 1-of-6 shooting in 16 minutes. After the game, Carlisle expressed deep concern about Barea's injury.
I'm very very concerned. I think something happened. I don't think it was something where it was just tight. I think something happened. We'll have more information tomorrow. He's a very very important guy, but if he can't go. Ray, Deron and Harris have to take up that slack. It's been a next man up proposition all year long. We've been down bodies all year and this is no different.
Barea suffered the injury against Memphis on April 8. He missed the following game, played poorly in a win against Utah last Monday and missed again in the season finale playing the Spurs. Barea had been a huge part of the Mavericks' late playoff push, even winning Western Conference Player of the Week for his efforts at the start of April. However, with Barea hobbled, the Mavericks desperately lack scoring, as evidenced by their meager 31-point first half against Oklahoma City. If Barea can't go in Game 2, the Mavericks will struggle with similar problems.