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Tony Parker has slight hamstring strain, hopes to play in Game 4 of NBA Finals

Marc J. Spears
Yahoo Sports

SAN ANTONIO – Tony Parker has a slight right hamstring strain, but hopes to play in Thursday's Game 4 of the NBA Finals.

Parker underwent an MRI on Wednesday morning that revealed the strain and, importantly, didn't show a tear or defect. Parker announced the results on his Twitter account.

"Hopefully, I will be good [Thursday]," Parker said in a text to Yahoo! Sports.

Parker suffered the injury during the Spurs' 113-77 rout over the Miami Heat in Game 3 of the Finals. After the game, he said he was uncertain about the seriousness of the new injury and whether he would be able to play in Game 4.

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Tony Parker played 27 minutes in Game 3 before leaving with a hamstring injury. (Getty Images)

While the Spurs own a 2-1 lead in the series, losing Parker would present a major hurdle to their hopes of winning a fifth title.

"I'm trying to stay positive," Parker said late Tuesday. "Hopefully … I think it was just tight, a little cramp, a little bit of everything and I'll be fine. I'll wake up tomorrow and I'll be fine, that's my hope. I'll just try to stay positive."

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich took Parker out of Game 3 for good with 10:33 remaining in the fourth quarter. Parker described the injury as "really weird" and said he couldn't remember when or how he suffered it. He finished with six points on 2-of-5 shooting with eight assists in 27 minutes.

Parker was the last Spurs player to speak with reporters after spending a long time getting medical treatment on his hamstring. Parker was hampered by a calf injury in the second round of the playoffs against the Golden State Warriors, but has not had a notable injury since.

"We'll see," Parker said. "Hopefully it's nothing big and it's just a little cramping, or it got tight on me. It was just a weird feeling, and I just wanted to make sure the doc thought I was OK.

"I played only two minutes in the fourth quarter. We were up big, so Pop didn't want to take no risks. We'll see tomorrow."

Parker didn't arrive to the AT&T Center until about an hour before tip-off after driving through what he called the "worst traffic in 12 years." He said it took him two hours to get to the arena from Northwest San Antonio because traffic was snarled by rain and high school graduations. Parker said that he didn't warm up like he normally does before games because of his tardiness, but he didn't blame it for the injury.

If Parker can't play in Game 4 – or beyond – the Spurs will likely start Cory Joseph. The second-year guard averaged 7.2 points and 3.1 assists in nine games as a starter this season and had two points and four assists in Game 3. The Spurs also have a third point guard in Patty Mills, but have used Manu Ginobili as a primary ball-handler with their reserves, alongside Gary Neal.

NBA Finals coverage on Yahoo! Sports:
Danny Green, Gary Neal take long road to center stage of NBA Finals
Spurs dominate Game 3 despite lack of star power
Danny Green, Gary Neal lead Finals-record charge as Spurs crush impotent Heat
Gary Neal sums up Game 3 with buzzer-beating 3-pointer
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