This past week gave us superstar injuries, game-changing roster moves, and a father who talks way too damn much. The trade deadline and buy-out market are over, and now we come down the final stretch of the season. Stay locked in and enjoy the push to the postseason.
1) Kevin Durant hyperextends knee, out until Playoffs
This could create an interesting wrinkle come Playoff time. Superstar injuries are devastating, don’t get me wrong, but this impacts the Playoff picture; the Warriors should still be the top seed in the West, but if Durant comes back slowly, they could be susceptible for an upset. The Warriors signed Matt Barnes to fill the small forward gap for the time being, but he won’t be in the rotation by the end of the season.
2) Kyle Lowry undergoes wrist surgery, out until Playoffs
Lowry is a smaller name than Durant, but his injury impacts the Raptors much more than Durant’s does to the Warriors. Serge Ibaka and P.J. Tucker are fitting in incredibly well, and ideally the Raptors could’ve close the season out fully healthy to prepare for a hopefully deep Playoff run. Lowry can potentially return with a few games left in the season, but it’ll be tough for him to instantly be in game shape.
3) Deron Williams & Andrew Bogut are bought out, both sign with Cavaliers
This is amazing, it really is. The fact that the East-favourite Cavaliers can add two contributing veterans for next to nothing makes me laugh, the buy-out market is always fun to see who is chasing a ring. Deron should be the back-up playmaker that LeBron was looking for, and Bogut adds toughness and passing IQ to their bench. The Raptors stocked up at the deadline, and the Cavs did the same during buy-out season.
4) DeMarcus Cousins is first to 18 technicals, suspended for one game
It wouldn’t be tough to guess who leads the league in technical fouls, Cousins is well known for having a temper. This is tough because his new team, the Pelicans, are fighting an uphill battle to get into the Playoffs.
5) Pelicans are 1-3 since adding Cousins
…and that one win that they have in the last four, yeah that was the game that Cousins was suspended for. Not a great start to the new twin-towers down in New Orleans..
6) Isaiah Thomas makes gun gesture at DeMarre Carroll
This situation was really bad, and I’m surprised that the NBA didn’t fine, or even suspend Isaiah. The two got into a heated exchange after a tough play at the rim, a usual type of situation. But this time, Isaiah made a gun gesture in Carroll’s direction with his hand, and that’s just not something you do in a professional basketball game, nevertheless anywhere. The NBA apparently looked into the incident, but it appears as if nothing will come of it, and that really does shock me.
7) Joel Embiid’s season is officially over
For the love of all that is good, please let Embiid come back strong next year. This is a tough setback for him, and not a good sign for his future, as he only managed 31 games before tearing his meniscus. That means that he has played 31 games in three seasons. I love Embiid, and when he’s playing well it’s amazing for the league, please let him come back healthy and have a good career.
8) Lonzo Ball’s father mispeaks, says son will only play for Lakers
I don’t usually comment on collegiate basketball, but Lonzo Ball is an upcoming superstar, and his father is just so insane. Lavar Ball has stated that Lonzo is better than Steph Curry, and that if they switched teams that the Warriors would be better. I mean, you can be proud of your son and think he’s amazing, but there’s a line. Everyone in their right mind knows that two-time MVP Curry is miles ahead of Lonzo Ball. Lavar Ball might have to learn to keep it quiet once his sons are in the league, or else he could be a problem for them.
9) Brandon Jennings waived, signs with Wizards
First Joakim Noah gets injured, then they waive Jennings, and now Phil Jackson and the Knicks are thinking about waiving Rose. Wow, how the…mighty? have fallen. On paper those moves in the summer looked like the Knicks would at least be a Playoff team, but now it’s just depressing to be a New York fan. Kristaps, I feel bad for you, hopefully they are starting to accept the re-build.
10) The Warriors clinch a Playoff spot
It was only a matter of time, we just have to hope that whoever ends up in the 8th seed gives them a decent challenge in the first round.