Superstar players are going down left right and centre!
First to fall just before All Star break was Kevin Love. This hasn’t hurt the Cavs that much due to the fact they have that LeBron guy, but it still hurts the rotation. They’ve brought in Derrick Williams to cover for Love and he’s done a great job so far, exceeding expectations from those in Cleveland no doubt. But could they win a title without Kevin Love?
It sucked to see one of the NBA’s best characters shut down at the back end of the season. Joel Embiid was taking the league by storm and really turned around the Philly franchise. Embiid was a sure thing for Rookie of the Year, averaging 20.2 PPG, 7.8 RPG and 2.5 BPG. However he’s only played 31 games. No Rookie has ever won Rookie of the Year honours playing less than 50 games. Would it be fair on other rookies to give Embiid the honours with such a small sample size?
Kyle Lowry is another who has gone down and will miss the end of the regular season. For the team who made some big moves to get Ibaka and PJ Tucker, they can’t afford to slip up now and fall down the ladder in the East. Ideally they would like to avoid the 4 seed, most likely putting them up against the Cavs in round 2. Now they’ll just be hoping to hold on to home court advantage. It’ll take a lot from their other all-star guard to carry them through this last portion of the season!
The one that has every Golden State Warriors fan nervous, Kevin Durant, is out probably until the end of the regular season with a knee sprain. Do Golden State have enough left to still finish on top? They gave up a lot to get Durant, gutting just about their whole bench brigade, so this will really test their rotation. Many of their younger players are now going to play some big minutes down the stretch.
Which begs the question. With all these injuries at the back end of the season, is the NBA Season simply too long? We all love our hoops but let’s be honest, it’s just too long. It should be at least cut down to say 55-60 games with less back to backs, so that we don’t have players just taking nights off for “rest”. The fans are the ones being let down the most. If you’re paying in excess of $200 for a ticket and you get to the arena to hear LeBron is taking the night off to have a rest, you’re not impressed. Making the season shorter with less back to backs will make sure all players get the right amount of rest on days off, decreases risk of injury, and increases the level of basketball we will be seeing on a more regular basis.
Would love to hear everyone’s thoughts on the matter and how you think these injuries will hurt their respective teams coming into the back end of the season!