Hornets’ David West injures knee, leaves game in wheelchair


UPDATE March 25, 12:34 am: The Hornets are officially calling this “left knee trauma” (which is a pretty scary term) but said in a release that the X-rays are negative. He will have an MRI before the team discusses the severity of the injury.

Al Jefferson of the Jazz said he hopes he is wrong but to him it looked like the injury was major and compared it to when Jefferson tore his ACL, reports Brian T. Smith of the Salt Lake City Tribune via twitter. If you’ve seen the video it’s hard to think it is anything but something serious.

March 24, 11:31 pm: This looked horrible, sickeningly bad. We can only hope the actual injury the Hornets leading scorer David West isn’t as bad as it looked.

With the Hornets down two and 10 seconds left against Utah, West started a drive from the left wing and got to the basket, where Paul Millsap came to challenge but was late. West tied the game at 103-103 with a dunk.

But he landed awkwardly on his left leg and West’s knee buckled under him in one of those ways that makes all of us watching the replay just cringe. One of those where a knee is not meant to bend that way.

West fell next to the station and while play continued on you could hear West on the broadcast screaming in pain. Team medical staff came out and he was eventually taken off the floor in a wheelchair.

We do not know the extent of the injuries but check PBT for updates as we get them.

This injury could have big playoff implications. The Hornets are currently the seven seed in the Western Conference but just half a game ahead of the Grizzlies in the in the eight spot. The Rockets are 2.5 games back in the nine seed and missing the playoffs all together. Obviously, the Hornets are not the same team if West cannot play.

Also, West was expected to opt out of the $7.5 million he was owed next season and test the free agent market. Where he would have attracted a lot of suitors. If this is serious it could change all of that.

We hope, for West and the Hornets’ sake, it’s not as bad as it looked.

Kevin Love names NBA players he thinks could play in NFL

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The majority of guys in the NBA are not built for the NFL. Blake Griffin the tight end makes a huge target for a free safety to line up. Kevin Durant is a little thin. Carmelo Anthony? Come on now.

But there are a few guys who might be able to, and on his show Dan Patrick asks Kevin Love about it today (see the video above). Then DP tries to take the obvious call of LeBron James off the table.

Nate Robinson as a DB? He’s athletic enough but at his height he would be a target for tall receivers. I like Dan Patrick’s suggestion of Russell Westbrook the free safety — he is certainly athletic enough.

Love also picked himself as a QB. Um, no. I’m not sure his outlet passing skills translate.

Hawks’ Thabo Sefolosha on not guilty verdict: “Justice was served”

Thabo Sefolosha
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Friday morning, a New York jury found Atlanta Hawks guard Thabo Sefolosha not guilty of misdemeanor obstructing government administration, disorderly conduct, and resisting arrest. The charges stemmed from the night in the final weeks of last season when Sefolosha and then teammate Pero Antic went to a New York club after arriving in town, and while there Pacers’ player Chris Copeland was stabbed outside the club. In his clash with police, Sefolosha suffered a broken leg that required surgery and kept him out of the playoffs.

The New York prosecutor tried to make this go away with a plea deal of just day of community service and six months probation. But Sefolosha had the means and mind to fight the charges, got his day in court and won. This is what he said in a statement after the verdict, released by the Atlanta Hawks.

“This morning’s verdict ended a long and emotional period for me.  Justice was served and for that I am eternally grateful to the judge and jury for their quick and deliberate decision….

“It’s troubling to me that with so much evidence in my support that this case would even be brought to trial and that I had to defend myself so hard to get justice. It pains me to think about all of the innocent people who aren’t fortunate enough to have the resources, visibility and access to quality legal counsel that I have had.

“It was important to me as a man, a father to two young girls and as a role model, to stand up for what I believe in and have my name cleared of any wrongdoing.  Today’s verdict will not make up for the pain and trauma my family and I have suffered over the past six months or bring back the opportunity to have played in the Eastern Conference Finals and have a shot at an NBA title, but it does bring me some peace and closes a painful chapter in my life.

“Now I look forward to returning to the team and focusing solely on my rehabilitation for the upcoming season so that I can get back to playing the game I cherish so much.”

While Sefolosha says he is focusing “solely” on his rehab, the win in the criminal case would bode well for a potential civil case if he wanted to sue regarding his treatment and the broken leg.

Hawks’ coach Mike Budenholzer — who testified at the trial and was amused by parts of it — released this statement:

“Thabo is a man of great character and we are proud that he took a principled approach to proving his innocence. We are extremely happy for him and his family, and we are very pleased with today’s verdict in his favor.”