Kyrie Irving hasn’t forgotten about the ankle injury that he suffered in last year’s playoff series against Milwaukee. The Brooklyn Nets lost to Cleveland on Monday, and after the game, the point guard spoke about the injury that kept him out of the final three games in the series.
We all remember how that series ended, and if Irving would’ve remained healthy, it’s likely that the Bucks wouldn’t have ended their 50-year championship drought.
Nonetheless, Milwaukee was the last team standing.
And Irving isn’t convinced that the injury that he suffered was an accident, and Giannis Antetokounmpo is the one to blame.
Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving calls out Giannis Antetokounmpo for injury.
Do you think that Irving’s the type to hold a grudge?
It was just last week that he had an injury scare after Portland’s Nassir Little dove after a loose ball and collided with Irving’s left ankle. Luckily, the result was an ankle sprain, but it could’ve turned out to be something far worse.
Brooklyn can’t afford to have more injured players out right now, especially given the fact that Kevin Durant is out for 4-6 weeks with a sprained MCL that he suffered on Saturday against New Orleans.
According to Steve Nash, Joe Harris’ rehab isn’t going as planned, and while it seemed as if his return was on the horizon, his exact timetable is unknown.
The Nets can’t lose Irving, although he’s only in a part-time role. We saw how his loss affected Brooklyn last June, and although that’s in the past, Irving was asked to recap the past year on Monday.
Of course, he brought up his injury, and it’s clear that he faults Antetokounmpo for it.
The injury occurred whenever Irving was underneath the basket. He was guarded by Jrue Holliday, and when Irving jumped up to shoot the ball, Antetokounmpo rushed over to get the rebound. The six-foot-eleven forward placed his foot under Irving, who was still in the air. And when he came down, Irving’s right ankle landed awkwardly on Antetokounmpo’s foot.
Brooklyn might’ve gotten the two points, but lost Irving to a sprained ankle in the process.
Antetokounmpo went on to be named the NBA Finals MVP, but would things have been different if Irving didn’t get injured? Probably so.
However, it’s hard to say that Antetokounmpo injured Irving on purpose. Just like with Little, the play could’ve been prevented, but it doesn’t seem as if either player acted maliciously.
The Nets are 0-2 against the Bucks this season, and the team was without Irving in both losses. Brooklyn will travel to Milwaukee on Feb. 26 to face the league’s reigning champions once again, and this time, Irving will get to play.
That game should already be circled on your calendar, but Irving’s comments added more fuel to the fire. Is it possible to fast forward past the next month and a half?