Game 1 between the San Antonio Spurs and Golden State Warriors was one of the most interesting games of the playoffs thus far. The Warriors, who were undefeated coming into the game, got absolutely embarrassed for the first three quarters of the game. San Antonio simply was the better team; they were out working Golden State in every aspect of the game and maintained a 25 point lead at one point.
The one play that changed the entire course of this game was an injury sustained by MVP candidate Kawhi Leonard. Leonard was undercut by Golden State Warriors center Zaza Pachulia on this play.
This type of play has become notorious around the NBA as a very dirty play. By stepping under the landing spot of Leonard, Pachulia did not give him any landing area which increases his chances of twisting his ankle. This is a very common play around the league and many have urged the NBA to take another look at it and enforce it more strictly.
Leonard had an ankle injury that he got in game six of the Houston series and missed game seven for as well. Many spurs fans were complaining that this play by Pachulia was in an effort to injure Leonard.
Now, they are taking it to a whole other level and suing him.
A passionate Spurs fan has now filed a lawsuit against Zaza Pachulia and The Golden State Warriors on that basis that the targeting of Kawhi Leonard “devastated the quality of the Spurs’ chances of being competitive” and diminished “the value of the tickets purchased by plaintiff subsequent to their purchase.”
Lead attorney, Alfonso Kennard Jr. explained, “All we are asking from the court is that this type of behavior, that can and does cause serious injury to our team and those that love it, not be allowed in San Antonio.”
While this may be a serious issue, it should be addressed by the NBA, not the United States government. There are far more serious cases that we should concentrate on in our legal system instead of filling it with useless cases like these. Whether Pachulia intended to hurt Leonard or not, this type of undercutting play need to be looked at by the NBA and enforced accordingly.
“My approach to this game for 14 years that I’ve been in the league is to play hard and [give] 100 percent of whatever I have,” Pachulia said Monday after practice. “So I don’t agree with the calls that I’m a dirty player. I’m not a dirty player. I love this game, and I’m playing hard. That’s what I was taught since day one.”
The Spurs went on to win game one and two and currently have a 2-0 lead in the series. The series resumes Saturday at 9:00 p.m. in San Antonio.