JR Smith defends play where Andrew Bogut got hurt
Cavs guard JR Smith doesn’t have very many qualms about the play that ended the year of Warriors center Andrew Bogut.
Smith commented on Thursday about his collision with Bogut in Game 5 that resulted in a sprained knee for the Australian big man.
“I fell slow to the ground, and he went down,” Smith said via Diamond Leung of The Mercury News. “It’s a basketball play. It’s not like I’m out there trying to take his legs out.”
Bogut, for his part, wasn’t quite as convinced, saying, “I don’t know how he fell and all that, but tough for interpretation. I blocked his shot. Somehow he cannon-balled right into my shin with his shoulder. It was painful.”
The 31-year-old Bogut was injured when he jumped straight up to block a Smith layup in the third quarter and Smith proceeded to fall into his knee (video here). Bogut was subsequently ruled out for the rest of the NBA Finals and given a six-to-eight week recovery timetable.
It’s hard to imagine there being any intent on the part of Smith, as judging by the replay, it looked like his forward momentum simply carried him into Bogut’s knee. It’s understandable that Bogut is salty since he now has to watch the remainder of this hotly-contested NBA Finals series from the sidelines, but this seems more like a case of an unlucky occurrence rather than one of deliberate malice.