When Kobe Bryant went down with what in all likelihood is a torn Achilles injury with three minutes to play in the Lakers’ win over the Warriors on Friday, it wasn’t his first injury of the night.
As seen in the video clip above, Bryant suffered minor injuries to his knee and his foot over the course of the game, and the overcompensation for them more than anything else may have contributed to the very serious injury that ended his season.
Phil Jackson weighed in on Bryant’s injury via Twitter, and mentioned this while briefly wondering what might have been if Bryant had shut it down for the night after the first two “mishaps.”
Kobe wasn’t going to let the Lakers miss the playoffs. We watched him go thru 3 anguishing plays-the last one devastating…
Second guessing is pointless here, because we all know Bryant was going to play as long as he could walk. He said afterward in his postgame press conference that he couldn’t, and that’s the only reason he came out of that game.
Much has been made of Mike D’Antoni’s lack of control over Bryant’s minutes being one of the reasons for the injury, but the awkward way he was injured twice before on this night likely had far more to do with it — especially with an injury like a torn Achilles that can happen with essentially no warning at all.
Dwyane Wade ‘honored’ to be Prince’s favorite player
The officiating crew missed a host of calls during those final 13 seconds, but they have at least owned up to the most egregious one — missing Dion Waiters pushing off Manu Ginobili while the Thunder guard tried to inbound the ball. (Yes, Ginobili’s foot was on the line, but sorry Thunder homers that was not close to the most egregious miss at the end.)
After the game, the lead official Kenny Mauer admitted that error.
Did that decide the game? No. We like to focus on things we can blame as going wrong, but the Spurs offense started 2-of-15 shooting on the night, was inconsistent, and they still had a chance at the end. This one play is not why the Spurs lost. Manu Ginobili said it well postgame.
Raptors’ Bismack Biyombo given after-the-fact Flagrant 2 for elbow to Pacers’ Turner, no suspension
However, no mention of a suspension for this incident alone. The Raptors catch a break there, as Biyombo should have been tossed from the game and/or given a suspension for that elbow. That said, one more flagrant and he does get a suspension.
NBA’s Basketball Without Borders to host first event in Australia
Australia has brought a fair amount of talent — and scrappy players — to the NBA, and now the NBA is taking one of its outreach programs there.
Yesterday the NBA, FIBA, and Australia’s National Basketball League announced a Basketball without Borders event June 23-26 at Dandenong Basketball Stadium in Melbourne. It’s the first time the community outreach program will come to the island nation of Australia.
“We are pleased to partner with FIBA and the NBL to bring the first Basketball without Borders camp to Australia,” NBA Asia Managing Director Scott Levy said in a statement. “The league has seen a surge of Australian talent in recent years, and we look forward to supporting the next generation by giving them a platform to showcase their skills alongside their peers from throughout the region.”
These events bring in youth basketball players and work with them, both giving young players highest quality instruction and raising the profile of the sport in the nation with a little star power. Basketball Without Borders will celebrate 15 years this summer and has been all over the globe with similar events.