HomeNewsKristaps Porzingis' 'Rare' Leg Injury Clouds NBA Finals, While Kyrie Irving Vows...

Kristaps Porzingis’ ‘Rare’ Leg Injury Clouds NBA Finals, While Kyrie Irving Vows to Improve for Mavs

Celtics center Kristaps Porzingis sustained a “rare injury” to his left leg and is listed as day-to-day for Boston’s next NBA Finals games.

The Celtics revealed on Tuesday that Porzingis has a torn medial retinaculum, causing the posterior tibialis tendon in his left leg to dislocate.

Porzingis, who missed 10 straight games earlier this playoffs due to a right calf strain, sustained his latest injury in the third quarter of Boston’s Game 2 win against the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday.

The Celtics said Tuesday that the two injuries are unconnected. After Sunday’s game, Porzingis said that he intended to play Game 3 in Dallas on Wednesday.

Porzingis has not played in Dallas in the two and a half years since the Mavericks moved him to the Washington Wizards. Last summer, the 28-year-old joined the Celtics via trade.

Porzingis ignited the Celtics in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, scoring 11 points and blocking two shots in the first quarter in a 107-89 victory. He ended with 20 points, 3 blocked shots, and 6 rebounds. Kyrie Irving bears primary responsibility for the Dallas Mavericks’ 2-0 deficit in the NBA Finals.

Irving made this obvious during a chat with his teammate Luka Doncic after the Mavericks’ Game 2 defeat to the Boston Celtics on Sunday night.

“It started with me simply telling my hermano that I needed to play better for him, alongside him,” Irving said during Tuesday’s practice at the American Airlines Center. “In order for us to achieve our objective, we must both play well and execute the small things necessary to win.

“Easy discussion. But it began with my reaching out, just telling him it was my fault and accepting responsibility for not performing very well.”

In the 2 defeats the Mavs suffered in Boston, Irving scored 14.0 points per game while shooting 35.1% from the field and 0-for-8 from outside the arc. His postseason performance, which included three 30-point games in Dallas’ victories over the Western Conference-leading Minnesota Timberwolves and a 48.5% shooting percentage, propelled him to an average of 22.8 points per game heading into the Finals.

“The first step is to accept that I haven’t played as well or up to my standards as I would have liked,” said Irving, who has lost 12 straight games versus the Celtics, the team he left in free agency during the 2019 summer.

Having returned to Boston, I am filled with an overwhelming desire to perform at a high level. I wanted to be there for my guys. As a competitor, it’s aggravating. But I don’t want it to creep in and influence any other choices I have to make as a player.”

Celtics coach Joe Mazzulla said that Boston is prepared for Irving to play more aggressively in Game 3.

“It’s not about shutting him down,” Mazzulla said. “It’s simply about making things tough for him because of his ability to effect plays, and we’ll have to battle for that. He’s received some nice glances. I believe we need to better protect him. “I think he’ll be more aggressive.” Irving made it clear that he had been down 2-0 in the Finals twice previously.

“I know what it takes,” Irving said.

In 2016, his Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Golden State Warriors in 7 games, with Irving averaging 30.0 points in 3 consecutive wins to close off the series, culminating in making the winning shot in Game 7. The Warriors eliminated the Cavaliers in 5 games in the next year’s Finals.

Irving believes the stakes have risen in the series against the Celtics, a 64-win club with the NBA’s best regular-season record and just 2 playoff losses. “We know what we’re in for,” Irving added. “But now we have to raise it to an even higher level, and it starts with me.”

Abu Bakar
Abu Bakar
Abubakar is a writer and digital marketing expert. Who has founded multiple blogs and successful businesses in the fields of digital marketing, software development. A full-service digital media agency that partners with clients to boost their business outcomes.


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