The Portland Trail Blazers emerged victorious in Game 3 early this morning. It took four overtimes and a ton of aerobic exercise to determine a winner. The epic marathon was a war of attrition and tensions ran high throughout the entire 3.5-hour contest.
Denver’s Nikola Jokic, who shoved Enes Kanter in Game 2, appeared to be up to his old tricks shortly before halftime when he delivered a blow on a free-throw boxout that perhaps crossed the line of necessity.
Kanter’s left shoulder, which was injured in the series against Oklahoma City Thunder, took the brunt of the blow. Coincidence? Unlikely.
The contact went uncalled in real time and, honestly, probably should have. Kanter is obviously displeased with the incident though, and took time to Tweet at NBA refs before going to bed, demanding justice.
It’s tough to imagine the NBA doing anything. While this is fairly clearly poor sportsmanship, it fits the definition of a basketball play. It probably hurt Kanter’s already sore shoulder a bit, but nothing like the pain of playing 68 minutes of basketball only to walk away facing a 2-1 series deficit.