Saturday, March 11, 2017

The wild, wild west of the NBA

Well OK. Superstar Kevin Durant is out with a knee injury for at least a month. Does this spell major trouble for the Golden State Warriors? You betcha it does. He was their leading scorer and rebounder, besides the fact the Warriors had to get rid of a few pretty good players to make room for him on the roster (see salary cap) in the first place.

And quietly lurking in the bushes all year have been the San Antonio Spurs. Coach Pop's crew is only a game or two behind at last look. 

Delete Durant from the equation until the playoffs start (and even the Warriors have no idea if he'll be good to go even then), and it's entirely likely the Spurs will zoom past them into the position of home court advantage throughout the postseason. 

Further, Steph Curry and Klay Thompson appear to have fallen into a bit of a funk. Consequently, the Warriors are most definitely beatable these days, by even average teams. See them get blown out at home by the Celtics, and even lose to the lowly Timberwolves. Yikes. This wasn't supposed to happen.

What was once a highly awaited match-up on Saturday night -- Golden State @ San Antonio -- is no more. GS head coach Steve Kerr, through either a total white flag waving cop-out or looking at long term strategy, has decided to "rest" his starters for the game. No Steph, or Klay, or Draymond, and probably not even that Iggy guy. No doubt, Commish Adam Silver, aka Mr. Peanuthead, is not happy. His nationally televised prime-time marquis match-up just went poof. Who is even less pleased than the head suit? The sponsors that had already ponied up mega-bucks to advertise their wares during the game. Once TV viewers grasp what is really happening, or not, they'll be clicking elsewhere in droves. See the ratings plummet. The marketing people hate it when that happens. Something about cha-chings they won't get.

On the other hand, San Antonio's resident superstar, Kawhi Leonard, as humble and low-profile as they come, won't be playing either. Evidently he got bopped on his little coconut in the Spurs' latest contest, and has entered the dreaded "concussion protocol". Cue Twilight Zone theme here. Do-do-do-do -- do-do-do-do.

So what does that mean? The best defensive player in the NBA won't be available to guard the best offensive players not named Russell Westbrook or James Hardin in the league -- because their own coach has benched them for this game. This is some kind of wacky deal.

Know what's REALLY funny? Golden State's Draymond Green not objecting to being sat for this game. After all, quoth the Drayster, the schedule has been absolutely brutal.

Maybe so, DG. But not nearly as brutal as some of those thunderous kicks to the groin you have a nasty habit of delivering to opposing players.

So here we'll have a once great game that has turned into a blah-fest, and a contest that could have been a showdown for Western superiority between the two best teams in a neck and neck race gone off the rails into never-never land.

But hey, look at the upside. Unless another culprit emerges as a nefarious "under" study of dear Draymond, the collective family jewels should at least be relatively safe in San Antonio.

Always a good thing....

No comments:

Post a Comment