Fullcourt Press – June 16

Recapping todays NBA News

While it’s not clear if Chris Paul tested positive or was exposed, he is definitely in health and safety protocol and quarantining. Officially, Kawi Leonard has a knee injury, but Shams Charania is reporting that the Clippers fear it may be an ACL injury. On top of all that, Donnie Nelson is out as GM of the Mavericks.

Today was a rough day for fans of the NBA, regardless of where your fandom lies.


The Chris Paul news may or may not have a significant impact on the Suns. They are waiting for the winner of the Jazz v Clippers series which may take a while to conclude. Remember when the Dodgers won the World Series last year and Justin Turner was pulled mid-game after testing positive, yet, rejoined his team to celebrate the World Series win? I’m just suggesting that I’d be surprised to see Chris Paul miss any Conference Finals games.


The Kawhi Leonard news is just sad. Any time any player suffers any ACL injury it’s sad. But, when you factor in the Clippers history as a franchise it just becomes downright depressing. Hoping for positive news on Kawhi soon, but even if its just an ACL spain would likely mean he is out for the duration of the playoffs. The only hope for the Clippers when it comes to Kawhi is that the fear of an ACL injury was unfounded and it is simply a sore knee.


Stan Van Gundy had one season to get a young, but talented team into the playoffs. He didn’t do it. I don’t like short leashes on a coach. Sometimes it take a season or two just to get a feel for your teams dynamic. A coach should be given at least three seasons to be properly evaluated, but the Pelicans are in win-now mode, or at least playoff-now mode.

Thunder, Wizards, ?

Scott Brooks had success in Oklahoma City and led a Wizards team that got off to a rough start to the playoffs. Hmmmm, if he is willing to deal with the pressure of playoffs-or-bust mentality in New Orleans their may be a great job for him there. Also, the Wizards GM phone must be buzzing like crazy with potential discussions on Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal‘s availability.

Mike Conley

Mike Conley being out for game 5 is interesting. He is no doubt still suffering from the effects of his injury, but would be still be out if Kawhi was healthy? If not, the Jazz keeping him out again makes sense in that they have been competitive against the Clippers and Kawhi so far without Conley. But, if he could play and doesn’t it may open the Jazz up to a letdown. Even Mike Conley sees that as a possibility.

“That’s not news you wants to hear at any point as an athlete. Those are tough. It’ll be a tough situation for them… We know the kind of talent Kawhi is and what he brings. We can’t look at this as a reason to exhale and relax.”

Mike Conley on Kawi Leonard’s injury
Kyrie Irving

Kyrie Irving remains out for the Nets and if you saw how he twisted it, you aren’t surprised. Irving is a great talent, but the Nets still have James Harden and Kevin Durant. Neither one of that duo will likely repeat their performance from game 5. Harden will not shot 1-10 (0-8 from 3-point range) and Durant won’t go off for 49pts, 17rbs and 10ast. Expect more from Harden and just a little less from Durant, but that is still enough to offset the loss of Irving.

Luka Legend

It’s hard not to take the news out of Dallas as another rung in the NBA superstar ladder for Luka Doncic. Several great players have held the unofficial title of GM in the Association. Now, it seems, so does Doncic.


Some good news today, LaMelo Ball is the Rookie of the Year. Well deserved and a perfect place to end today.

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