OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - APRIL 30: Kevin Durant #35 and Kendrick Perkins #5 of the Oklahoma City Thunder celebrate beating the Dallas Mavericks in Game Two of the Western Conference Quarterfinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs on April 30, 2012 at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Oklahoma City defeated Dallas 102-99. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using the photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images)

Kendrick Perkins Injury: Thunder Center Has Hip Strain, No Timetable For Return

Kendrick Perkins suffered a right hip strain on Saturday and is day-to-day.

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Kendrick Perkins Injury: No Timetable For Thunder Center's Return

One of the biggest benefits of taking care of business in the first round is the added rest you can give your injured players, which is why the Oklahoma City Thunder's sweep of the Dallas Mavericks could be a big deal in their efforts to reach the NBA Finals.

Thunder center Kendrick Perkins left in the first quarter of their Game 4 victory with a hip strain, and it's still unclear when he will be able to return:

While he didn't contribute much against the Mavericks, his ability to defend the low post will be absolutely essential in a possible second-round series against the LA Lakers.

For updates and perspective on the Oklahoma City Thunder, head on over to Welcome to Loud City.

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Kendrick Perkins Injury: Thunder Center Leaves Game Vs. Mavericks With Hip Strain

The Oklahoma City Thunder will have to try to sweep the Dallas Mavericks in their 2012 NBA Playoffs first round series without their starting center. Kendrick Perkins suffered a right hip strain early in the first quarter and will not return for the rest of the game, TNT sideline reporter Mardy Snider reported on the broadcast.

While Perkins is not a major offensive threat, his defense and toughness helps define the Thunder's identity. It's not a loss on the caliber of Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook or James Harden, but it is something that will affect Oklahoma City going forward. It remains unclear when Perkins suffered the injury.

With Perkins sidelined, the Thunder will rely more on backup Nick Collison to man the position. Veteran Nazr Mohammad will likely also play more after being out of the rotation for the first three games of the playoffs.

For all news and information regarding the Dallas Mavericks, please visit Mavs Moneyball or check out SB Nation Dallas. For updates and perspective on the Oklahoma City Thunder, head on over to Welcome to Loud City.

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