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Saturday, May 25, 2019

Basketball

Chris Broussard defends himself amid Twitter beef with Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant

FS1 personality Chris Broussard defended himself in a video shared on Twitter Wednesday amid a beef that has been stewing with Kevin Durant.

Durant and Broussard first got into things on Monday over some comments Broussard made on his radio show. Broussard said that the Golden State Warriors winning without the two-time Finals MVP was Durant’s “worst nightmare.” Durant, as he’s been known to do, responded to the tweet and questioned Broussard for exaggerating.

Broussard then went on FS1’s “Undisputed” show and shared some background to their relationship. He said Wednesday that the two have texted for hours about things. Durant took issue with that, saying Broussard doesn’t have his number.

After their back-and-forth made headlines, Broussard recorded a video to explain his side. He says he and Durant have had long personal conversations in the past and that the means for them — text message or direct message — is mostly irrelevant to the larger point that they do have a relationship.

Durant has a point. Broussard saying they’ve had long text conversations does make it seem like they have a closer relationship than they really do. But both examples of Durant’s complaining show his tendency to make a bigger deal of things than necessary.

Nick Nurse admits Kyle Lowry’s hand is ‘not great’

Kyle Lowry

The Toronto Raptors are battling some serious pain to play their way through the Eastern Conference Finals.

On Wednesday, coach Nick Nurse admitted that point guard Kyle Lowry was battling pain in his left hand as a result of a thumb injury suffered in the conference semifinals against Philadelphia.

“Kyle’s hand is not great,” Nurse said, via Tim Bontemps of ESPN. “You know, he’s — it’s hurt and it’s sore and it causes him a lot of pain. But he seems to be able to manage it through the game and do what he can do.”

Lowry was in some visible pain during Game 3. However, he’s still been effective against Milwaukee, especially after the series shifted to Toronto. He scored 25 points in a big Game 4 victory, so it’s clear he can still do the job despite his injury.

Ex-teammate: Don’t be surprised if Kevin Durant signs with Clippers

Kevin Durant Sonics

Kevin Durant got pestered by the LA Clippers during the first round of this year’s playoffs, but one of his old teammates is hinting that there could be much more to come for the two sides.

FOX Sports 1’s Kristine Leahy tweeted a clip on Wednesday of an upcoming interview of hers with former NBA big man Kendrick Perkins, who played with Durant on the Oklahoma City Thunder for five seasons. In the clip, Perkins spoke on the possibility of the superstar forward signing with the Clippers in free agency this summer.

“Don’t be surprised if KD signs with the Clippers,” he said. “Everybody keeps screaming New York, but don’t be surprised if KD signs and goes to play for [Clippers head coach] Doc [Rivers].

“I don’t even have to help recruit,” continued Perkins, who also played seven seasons for Rivers on the Boston Celtics. “He likes the organization. He likes Doc Rivers. He loves Doc Rivers.”

While Durant’s future will likely depend on if he wins a third straight title with the Golden State Warriors this year, the back-to-back Finals MVP has thus far been Eurostepping any talk about his summer plans. That said, the Clippers, who just won 48 games without a superstar on the roster, boast organizational stability, strong leadership and culture, and a quality young core poised to compete for many years to come. Couple that with their ability to offer max money in a marquee market, and it makes for quite a strong sell to Durant.

Mike Budenholzer not a fan of Drake roaming the sidelines

Drake’s behavior during the Eastern Conference Finals has become enough of a topic of conversation that coaches are weighing in.

During Game 4 in Toronto, the rapper and Raptors superfan made his way over to coach Nick Nurse and gave him a massage during the middle of the game. This struck a lot of observers the wrong way, as nobody in the arena seemed interested in doing anything about Drake — ostensibly a fan — roaming the sidelines unchecked.

Milwaukee Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer shared those concerns, too.

There’s nothing wrong with Drake acting like an over-the-top fan, but it would probably be best if he stayed near his seat while doing it. It’s not a distraction the coaches need.

Myles Turner not happy over exclusion from All-Defensive teams

Myles Turner

Despite being the anchor of a solid team defense, Indiana Pacers center Myles Turner was excluded from both the NBA All-Defensive first and second teams when they were announced Wednesday.

Turner, who had been floated as a possible Defensive Player of the Year candidate by some during the season, was left out behind Rudy Gobert and Joel Embiid at the center position, and wasted no time sharing his frustration with the voting on Twitter.

Turner has a right to feel at least a bit aggravated. He averaged a league-leading 2.7 blocks per game on a Pacers team that finished third in defensive rating. Being eligible at center and not forward definitely hurt him, as did the fact that Embiid was a significantly better rebounder statistically.

Spencer Dinwiddie makes bold claim about potential Nets-Knicks rivalry

Spencer Dinwiddie

The New York Knicks have been linked to big offseason moves, with chatter of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving potentially being on their way to the Big Apple. But there’s another team in the city that made the playoffs this season.

In fact, Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie is so confident in his team’s staying power, he thinks he’d still be playing on the best basketball team in New York even if the Knicks make those big moves.

The Nets know the media reality of New York and how the Knicks will always grab the bulk of the attention. Their players have a bit of a chip on their shoulder, though, and seem intent to show that this year’s successes are only the beginning regardless of what the Knicks are up to.

Did Drake cross line massaging Raptors coach during game?

Drake is easily the most recognizable Raptors fan in the world and has made it clear this postseason that he feels he is an important part of the team, but did his actions during Game 4 on Tuesday night cross the line?

The Raptors had an impressive showing at home to even their series against the Milwaukee Bucks at 2-2. Drake was as animated as ever the entire night, and at one point during the fourth quarter he gave Toronto coach Nick Nurse a little shoulder massage.

You have to wonder how Nurse feels about that. Drake is already allowed to parade the sidelines and be on the court at various points throughout the game, but messing with the coach during the game like that seems like a bit much.

Are the Raptors going to say something to Drake about it? Probably not. Heck, they just gave him his annual custom OVO jacket before Game 4, and it is reportedly worth nearly $800K.

Raptors fans probably appreciate the way Drake mocked Giannis Antetokounmpo for missing a free throw, but there should be limitations to his access in the middle of a playoff game.