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Maithanet

NBA Finals 2019: Can the Raptors Claw Out a Win?

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16 minutes ago, Jaime L said:

The Warriors though, it's a greyer area. What I hear is he looked really shaky/not ready in practice. But maybe he looked better the day of the game? Or maybe that's what they told themselves?

The one thing I would really have an issue with is if it's true the team doctors told Durant he couldn't make the injury worse. If so, that's malpractice. Let him make his own choice but you have to tell him the risks. 

It's impossible to know.  Even when they say "you can't make the injury worse", that just means that there's nothing about the injury that makes reinjury more likely.  Which is possible (although in this particular case seems unlikely). 

I've no doubt that everyone - trainers, doctors, coaches, Durant himself, EVERYONE had a lot of pressure on them to get back on the court.  It's what we expect of star athletes, and part of why they're paid millions of dollars.  Now, that doesn't mean it isn't the wrong call, it obviously was.  But everyone is going to lean on the side of "play through the injury" rather than "wait till next year".  Can you imagine a situation where Durant is mostly healthy, probably able to play, but he decides to just sit through game 5 because he doesn't want to risk it?  I mean...that's just not how professional athletes think.

The kinda scary/crazy hypothetical is if the situation would have been any different if Durant were under contract for 3 more years.  It's no different for Durant himself (the calculus is the same), but for the Warriors trainers and coaches, they have a lot more incentive to think about next year if they know Durant is going to be a Warrior.  Whereas if he's 90% gone, then the only thing that matters is whether he can help you win this year.  In which case, you do everything you can to push him onto the court.  I don't know whether that happened or not, but it's very possible.

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Kevin Durant has announced that he did indeed have surgery to repair his torn achilles tendon. 

That sucks, hope him a speedy recovery. 

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1 hour ago, Maithanet said:

The kinda scary/crazy hypothetical is if the situation would have been any different if Durant were under contract for 3 more years.  It's no different for Durant himself (the calculus is the same), but for the Warriors trainers and coaches, they have a lot more incentive to think about next year if they know Durant is going to be a Warrior.  Whereas if he's 90% gone, then the only thing that matters is whether he can help you win this year.  In which case, you do everything you can to push him onto the court.  I don't know whether that happened or not, but it's very possible.

Yes, I've thought about how different this whole situation would have play out had it been Curry, not Durant. The level of pressure to come back would be like 1/4th what we saw. Sure there would've been eagerness to have him help out but it just would've been generally assumed that if he wasn't playing it was because he couldn't. 

And there wouldn't be nearly the presumption of ulterior motives the player (when he was sitting out) or the team (when he did return). 

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Now here’s a dumb question - who pays KD’s salary for the year he’s out?

Does this mean he’s forced to pick up another year or two on his GSW contract to get paid? No one is going to sign him, he’s going to need a year off to heal. TSN put up the numbers on other Achilles heel injuries and it took between high 200s and high 300s in days to heal.

And surely any option year he has with GSW isn’t going to be for the money he would have made with a new team.

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3 hours ago, Fragile Bird said:

Gee, the last I heard most of North America was cheering for the Raptors to win, now they’ve flip-flopped?

Probably not, but I suspect some of the hate for both the team and the player has been diminished. At least I hope so.

Quote

Drake was asked to be the Raptors’ global rep back in 2013, so you know, he kinda meets players from every team and has done so for years. Not to mention he’s a rap star. Not to mention he has a mansion in Hidden Hills, outside LA, which is in California, which is where GS plays, so it’s ok to be a fan of players not playing for Toronto. And that includes players who used to play for Toronto and who Drake just may have been a fan of, who moved to a team that became champions and then moved to another team that became champions. If you get my drift.

The bolded section offends me to the core!

And yes, while he does have many friends across numerous sports leagues, Drake takes jock sniff to heights the likes of which we’ve never seen before.

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1 minute ago, Fragile Bird said:

Now here’s a dumb question - who pays KD’s salary for the year he’s out?

Does this mean he’s forced to pick up another year or two on his GSW contract to get paid? No one is going to sign him, he’s going to need a year off to heal. TSN put up the numbers on other Achilles heel injuries and it took between high 200s and high 300s in days to heal.

And surely any option year he has with GSW isn’t going to be for the money he would have made with a new team.

He has a player option to return to the Warriors next year for $31.5m but otherwise has the ability to go out into the free market and see what kind of longterm deal he can get. 

I expect multiple teams to still offer him a max (or near max) multiyear contract even knowing he won't be able to play next year. The Knicks, Nets and Clippers all opened max slots specifically with the hopes of luring Durant. I'd be surprised if all of them were scared off by this injury. He's a top 3 type talent in the NBA when healthy and those virtually never come available. Someone, somewhere is going to go all in on the hope he can fully recover his former athleticism. He's still only 30 after all. 

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12 minutes ago, Fragile Bird said:

Now here’s a dumb question - who pays KD’s salary for the year he’s out?

Does this mean he’s forced to pick up another year or two on his GSW contract to get paid? No one is going to sign him, he’s going to need a year off to heal. TSN put up the numbers on other Achilles heel injuries and it took between high 200s and high 300s in days to heal.

And surely any option year he has with GSW isn’t going to be for the money he would have made with a new team.

It’s not a dumb question at all, because the answer we don’t know. KD has a player option on his contract. He can either opt in and get $31m from the Warriors or he can hit the free market. Honestly there’s no “right” choice. Personally I think he should opt out because a team will give him a super max deal knowing he’s out for at least a year and that he’ll likely never be the same again.

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Just now, Jaime L said:

He has a player option to return to the Warriors next year for $31.5m but otherwise has the ability to go out into the free market and see what kind of longterm deal he can get. 

I expect multiple teams to still offer him a max (or near max) multiyear contract even knowing he won't be able to play next year. The Knicks, Nets and Clippers all opened max slots specifically with the hopes of luring Durant. I'd be surprised if all of them were scared off by this injury. He's a top 3 type talent in the NBA when healthy and those virtually never come available. Someone, somewhere is going to go all in on the hope he can fully recover his former athleticism. He's still only 30 after all. 

He was top 3. That’s gone.

It’s crazy to think how many plans this injury disrupted. I wonder if anyone is still willing to join him on a team with two max slots open.

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2 hours ago, Tywin et al. said:

It’s not a dumb question at all, because the answer we don’t know. KD has a player option on his contract. He can either opt in and get $31m from the Warriors or he can hit the free market. Honestly there’s no “right” choice. Personally I think he should opt out because a team will give him a super max deal knowing he’s out for at least a year and that he’ll likely never be the same again.

Is there a typo there? You wrote that a team will offer him a super max deal but by saying  he's out for a year and "he’ll likely never be the same again" it suggests you really mean no team will offer him a super max. Which therefore suggests his best course is to opt in to staying with the Warriors, but you say he should opt out.

Interestingly, KD's build always made me feel like he was fragile and subject to breakage. He looks all arms and legs to me so easy to get these things tangled up and damaged.

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17 minutes ago, The Anti-Targ said:

Is there a typo there? You wrote that a team will offer him a super max deal but by saying  he's out for a year and "he’ll likely never be the same again" it suggests you really mean no team will offer him a super max. Which therefore suggests his best course is to opt in to staying with the Warriors, but you say he should opt out.

Interestingly, KD's build always made me feel like he was fragile and subject to breakage. He looks all arms and legs to me so easy to get these things tangled up and damaged.

I don’t think he misspoke.  In a world where Joe Johnson was a max player, I don’t think it unrealistic to think a team would offer KD a SuperMax and yet also think he will never be quite the same.

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1 minute ago, Rhom said:

I don’t think he misspoke.  In a world where Joe Johnson was a max player, I don’t think it unrealistic to think a team would offer KD a SuperMax and yet also think he will never be quite the same.

Yeah, I was just having a text convo with my son, and he gave me that perspective, which means @Tywin et al. post makes sense to me now.

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Someone will offer Durant the max. That's pretty fucking certain. 

Tgese conspiracy theories about the injury are fucking ridiculous, btw. There is no way a guy like Durant doesn't get a second opinion before he decides to play. He, and only he, can make the decision to return, and he did. End of story. 

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What are the conspiracy theories? I haven't heard of any conspiracy theories.

The player can only decide not to play, but the coach / management can decide not to play him if they aren't happy with the medical clearance, and the player can't force himself onto the team. But yes, and of the day Durant does have the right to exclude himself from playing if he feels unfit or at risk of aggravating his injury. I would think most sports people are itching to get onto the court / field before they are fully fit, and it's up to the medical team and management to hold them back if they aren't ready. So as soon as the medical assessment passes him as fit to play, KD would have wanted to be out on court.

There's room for management to put some pressure on the medical staff to give a star player the all clear perhaps earlier than they might. But that's about as far as I would think any kind of conspiracy might go. If there's any suggestion he was played too early in the hopes that would seriously injure himself, that seems highly unlikely.

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12 hours ago, Tywin et al. said:

I actually don’t think it’s that complicated. We know KD wants to be the best and we know he’s extremely sensitive about what people think about him. He’s on social media and saw everyone questioning him, so he tried to give it a go. It just happened to go as poorly as humanly possible. At the end of the day everyone owns some blame. The fans, the media, the medical staff, his teammates, the organization. Everyone. And the cost of our greed was ruining one of the 25 best players off all time. Keep that in mind the next time we find ourselves here.

This is is a non-sequitur.  This could have occurred regardless of what various possible behind-the-scenes reality happens to be true.  

10 hours ago, DanteGabriel said:

There's also the possibility that he was moving differently or tentatively because he was recovering from the earlier injury which put strain on other parts of his leg and led to another injury. But this is all just speculation and guesswork. I suspect Rhom is right and maybe we'll never get the real story but there will be endless grist for conspiracy theories.

That's absolutely possible and has to be on the table as the explanation until (if) we hear the real story.  It's just such a twist if it's an Achilles rupture in the end when it was a false alarm Achilles rupture in the first place.  

To Maith's point about how a med staff's saying "not at risk of further injury":

It's a bit tricky to reconcile DG's points with that one.  Yes, I would think that it's true that no med staff ever really means that they can say this with 100% certainty, but they cannot be so medically illiterate, indeed no one less so, as to not be aware of the concept of how one injury impacts how you move, how you rely on other small parts of the body more heavily to compensate, etc...No huge point to make on this other than to just add fuel to the fire about how many ways there are to think about this.  

But man, let's say the med staff was genuinely as close as they could reasonably be to the "not at risk of injuring it further" stance.  If that's true, what happened out there to Durant is the stuff of nightmares for that med staff.  Suicide watch time.  

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10 hours ago, Triskele said:

To Maith's point about how a med staff's saying "not at risk of further injury":

It's a bit tricky to reconcile DG's points with that one.  Yes, I would think that it's true that no med staff ever really means that they can say this with 100% certainty, but they cannot be so medically illiterate, indeed no one less so, as to not be aware of the concept of how one injury impacts how you move, how you rely on other small parts of the body more heavily to compensate, etc...No huge point to make on this other than to just add fuel to the fire about how many ways there are to think about this.  

But man, let's say the med staff was genuinely as close as they could reasonably be to the "not at risk of injuring it further" stance.  If that's true, what happened out there to Durant is the stuff of nightmares for that med staff.  Suicide watch time.  

It is honestly hard to imagine any lower body injury serious enough to keep you out for a month that wouldn't put additional strain on the nearby joints/muscles when you return.  That's just how the body works, when one part of your body is weak, the rest tries to compensate.  Unless you are 100% recovered and 100% fit when returning (which is impossible, because you can't stay 100% fit when injured), then this is going to happen.

However, I would assume that when the training staff said "not at additional risk of reinjury" they nonetheless were clear that there's obviously a higher chance of something else go wrong.  But even with that higher chance, it would be really hard for Durant or any player to hold out of a championship simply on that risk. 

It's a real shame it wasn't something minor like a sprained knee or a pulled hammie that would let him know that his body isn't ready, because either of those he'd be back at 100% in another couple weeks/months.  Now he's looking at potentially the end of his prime before he's fully recovered. 

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10 hours ago, Triskele said:

This is is a non-sequitur.  This could have occurred regardless of what various possible behind-the-scenes reality happens to be true.  

I’d go as far as to say it would have occurred, be it in games 5, 6 or 7. KD should have never played in hindsight. Like I said before, if I was his agent or in his camp, I would have advised him not to come back. There was simply too much money on the line to risk it.

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I've been waiting for someone to comment about the fact that the NBA ruled the referees in Game 5 blew a foul call in the last 49 seconds of the game, that Cousins fouled Gasol and Gasol should have received 2 free shots.

That could have changed the tenor of the game.

This missed call is something you guys would usually be screaming about. Now if I were paranoid I'd say the referees were hoping GS could win and the championship game would not happen outside the US, or even if it did, Game 7 would come back Toronto and GS would win and show those uppity Canadians. 

https://www.cbc.ca/sports/basketball/nba/nba-finals-raptors-warriors-gasol-call-1.5171742

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1 minute ago, Fragile Bird said:

I've been waiting for someone to comment about the fact that the NBA ruled the referees in Game 5 blew a foul call in the last 49 seconds of the game, that Cousins fouled Gasol and Gasol should have received 2 free shots.

That could have changed the tenor of the game.

This missed call is something you guys would usually be screaming about. Now if I were paranoid I'd say the referees were hoping GS could win and the championship game would not happen outside the US, or even if it did, Game 7 would come back Toronto and GS would win and show those uppity Canadians. 

https://www.cbc.ca/sports/basketball/nba/nba-finals-raptors-warriors-gasol-call-1.5171742

Missed calls happen all the time though. The NBA publishes reviews on the officiating of the final two minutes but it doesn't amount to anything. You can't replay the game and the only thing you get are moral victories which count for nothing. It isn't like this is something that is super blatant either. People just shrug and move on now.

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Plus, it's harder to get that kind of call in the final minute.  Now, I'd agree that it shouldn't be that way, but it definitely is.  Watching it live I wasn't particularly surprised they didn't call it. 

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Plus plus, Boogie was already having a horrific final two minutes. Do we need to make it even worse?

Also, the goaltending call on his dunk was kind of BS, so they balance out.

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