Golden State Warriors center DeMarcus Cousins made an early exit from Monday’s Game 2 against the LA Clippers, suffering a left quad injury while tumbling after a loose ball with 8 1/2 minutes remaining in the first quarter.
DeMarcus Cousins (left quad injury) will not return to tonight’s game. He will get an MRI in the next 24 hours.
— Warriors PR (@WarriorsPR) April 16, 2019
Cousins wasn’t contacted on the play, and immediately stayed down as the Clippers corralled possession and pivoted upcourt in transition. He immediately flagged the training staff and began heading toward the locker room, walking gingerly on the injured leg.
The team updated his status shortly afterward, announcing he wouldn’t return and will be undergoing an MRI within a day’s time. Cousins had posted two points, two rebounds and an assist in three minutes prior to his exit. In 30 games this season, Cousins averaged 16.3 points, 8.2 rebounds, 3.6 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.5 blocks in 25.7 minutes.
Every Gone Fishin’ of 2019 NBA playoffs
The 2019 playoffs are well underway and the “Inside The NBA” crew has a watchful eye on every playoff series. But as teams see their playoff runs come to an end, Shaquille O’Neal, Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith give the traditional “Gone Fishin’ ” send-off that has been a staple of “Inside The NBA” for years.
As such, here is a look at every “Gone Fishin’ ” segment from the 2019 playoffs.
* * *
Nets, Thunder & Magic
* * *
(If you missed it, Shaq, Charles and Kenny paid homage to the Dirk Nowitzki, Dwyane Wade and the Los Angeles Lakers before the playoffs got started.)
About Last Night: Williams takes control
The Clippers have scratched and clawed all season, and they weren’t about to let up because they were down 3-1 to the reigning champion Warriors.
Lou Williams came off the bench for 33 points and led the Clippers past Golden State with a flurry of points in the final four minutes. The 129-121 victory on the Warriors’ home court overshadowed a stellar game by Kevin Durant, who finished with a playoff career-high 45 points.
But Wednesday night belonged to Williams, Montrezl Harrell, Danilo Gallinari and Patrick Beverley, who extended the first-round series to Game 6 on Friday.
The Clippers led most of the game, but the Warriors made a run late in the fourth and took a 118-117 lead with 2:40 left on a drive and dunk by Durant, his final score. Williams then proceeded to reel off nine points, including this fadeaway jumper at 1:29 that put the Clippers up by seven, 125-118.
They cruised the rest of the way as the Warriors capitulated in the final 30 seconds.
Harrell also contributed big time off the Clippers bench, dominating in the paint with dunk-after-dunk and finishing with 24 points.
Here are a couple of examples:
Beverley grabbed 14 rebounds, took a key charge late and finished with 17 points.
“He came out with more energy and that set a tone,” said Warriors coach Steve Kerr, noting that Beverley fought for three early offensive rebounds.
Gallinari added 26 points and seven rebounds.
Durant’s shooting — he was 14-for-26 with five 3-pointers and 12-for-12 at the line — kept the Warriors within striking distance.
This heavily contested 3-pointer, which resulted in a four-point play, shows his shooting prowess.
Durant passed John Havlicek for No. 12 on the all-time playoffs scoring list, moving past Havlicek’s 3,776 points late in the first quarter.
— NBA (@NBA) April 25, 2019
Durant, who poured in 21 in the first half, passed Havlicek with his second 3-pointer with 2:37 left in the first quarter. His 45 for the game gives him 3,815, and Larry Bird is next on the list with 3,897.
But they’ve showcased a way to keep reigning Kia MVP James Harden somewhat in check — guard him from behind, taking away the step-back 3 and forcing him to drive and shoot floaters. Despite an 0-for-7 start from the field, Harden still finished with 26 points. But that’s well off his league-leading regular-season average of 36.1 points.
Harden made this floater in the fourth quarter, but this is how Ricky Rubio guarded him, sliding behind and allowing a lane to open.
The Jazz forced him inside and tried to protect the rim without fouling, forcing the two-point shot instead of the 3-pointer from distance with the possibility of a foul and a four-point play.
Harden also misfired a bit more than usual in his 10-for-26 shooting night as this failed dunk attempt shows:
Harden missed a wide-open dunk 😬 pic.twitter.com/SliKqnpwD7
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) April 25, 2019
The strategy employed by the Jazz showed up in the limited number of times Harden went to the foul line: only five and hitting three. He averaged getting to the line 11 times per game in the regular season and scored 9.7 points from the line. And Harden wasn’t a big factor from behind-the-arc, going 3-for-12.
But the Jazz couldn’t capitalize on the offensive end, missing many open 3-point looks. They were a woeful 9-of-38 from behind the arc, or 23.7 percent.
Joe Ingles (11 points, nine assists) and Rubio (17 points, 11 assists) played well, keeping Utah in the game, but the Jazz couldn’t break through down the stretch.
Donovan Mitchell, who was only 4-for-22 and finished with 12 points, missed a 3-pointer in the final minute and Chris Paul sealed the win with two free throws. Mitchell misfired on all of his nine 3-point attempts.
Andrew Bogut joined the Warriors near the end of the regular season after playing Down Under with the Sydney Kings. The big man has filled a valuable role with the leg injury to DeMarcus Cousins. In Australia, they’re under the impression he would like to do it again next year.
Andrew Bogut open to returning to NBA for another playoff run after next Sydney Kings season #NBLxNBA
— NBA Australia (@NBA_AU) April 24, 2019
Stat of the night
The Rockets had 12 steals and 12 blocks. The last time they had double-digits in both categories was 1995 in Game 5 of the conference finals. They went on to win their first title.
2019 NBA Playoffs: Conference Semifinals Schedule and Matchups
Eastern Conference — Semifinals
Game 1: Sun, April 28, Boston at Milwaukee, 1 ET, ABC
Game 2: Tue, April 30, Boston at Milwaukee, TBD, TNT
Game 3: Fri, May 3, Milwaukee at Boston, TBD, ESPN
Game 4: Mon, May 6, Milwaukee at Boston, TBD, TNT
*Game 5: Wed, May 8, Boston at Milwaukee, TBD, TNT
*Game 6: Fri, May 10, Milwaukee at Boston, TBD, ESPN
*Game 7: Mon, May 13, Boston at Milwaukee, TBD, TNT
Game 1: Sat, April 27, Philadelphia at Toronto, TBD, TNT
Game 2: Mon, April 29, Philadelphia at Toronto, TBD, TNT
Game 3: Thu, May 2, Toronto at Philadelphia, 8 ET, ESPN
Game 4: Sun, May 5, Toronto at Philadelphia, 3:30 ET, ABC
*Game 5: Tue, May 7, Philadelphia at Toronto, TBD, TNT
*Game 6: Thu, May 9, Toronto at Philadelphia, TBD, ESPN
*Game 7: Sun, May 12, Philadelphia at Toronto, TBD, TNT
* * *
Additional scheduling information, including tip times for each game, will be furnished as soon as possible consistent with the need to fulfill league obligations.
If both Eastern Conference Semifinals series are completed in six (6) games or fewer, the Eastern Conference Finals may move up to begin on Monday, May 13.
All games in the Conference Semifinals are exclusive network telecasts on ABC, ESPN, or TNT, and not available to be televised locally.
* – If Necessary
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