Rockets guard James Harden had been relegated to the training room with a bruised right knee when the update reached the FedEx Forum court.

Jason Biles, Rockets assistant trainer, said a word or two to Keith Jones, the head athletic trainer. Jones reported to Kevin McHale, the coach. And they all shared a laugh.

Harden’s condition had been updated: He was hungry.

Given how gingerly Harden had limped to the locker room seven minutes into the game, having been sent sprawling to the floor when Quincy Pondexter ran into his right leg as Harden nailed a 3-pointer, the update from the training room was the best news possible. But by then, the Rockets had a pretty good idea the collision looked worse than the damage done.

“He’ll be fine,” McHale said. “I asked him. He said, ‘he hit my knee.’ I said, ‘bumped?’ He said ‘yeah.’ I think that’s all it is.”

Harden said he was never concerned the injury could be serious.

“It was painful, but … it’s better now,” Harden said.

Harden said he did not consider Pondexter’s play to be reckless, just poor defense.

“You’re taught not to foul jump shooters,” Harden said. “He just got too close and we bumped knees. It’s still basketball.”