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I have seen all the evidence, and I have listened to impassioned arguments on both sides of this case.

My verdict is in: Zaza Pachulia didn’t intentionally fall on Russell Westbrook.

Now the Oklahoma City guard and the NBA’s reigning MVP wants you to believe that Pachulia, who has a reputation for being a dirty player, deliberately fell on his legs in the third quarter of Saturday’s game between the Thunder and Warriors.

That’s an allegation that Pachulia has denied, but given his reputation, that denial isn’t getting much run.

Nor, frankly, should it. His reputation as a dirty player is well-earned, and the NBA should take a long look at this play and consider a suspension for the Warriors center.

That said, I don’t think he will get one. It’s an ugly-looking play, for sure, and Pachulia certainly doesn’t deserve the benefit of the doubt, but to me, it seems like a pretty clear case of him being wrapped up in a strange confluence of events and then having his reputation supersede the facts in the subsequent debate.

Before I break down how I came to this conclusion, I’d first, like to establish that this is all ridiculous and the debate has taken years off my life.

Now, let’s go over the facts of the case, because apparently, this is necessary:

With 2:25 remaining in the third quarter of Saturday’s Warriors win, Westbrook drove to the basket against Golden State guard Nick Young.

Westbrook missed the layup and Young grabbed the rebound as Westbrook made a wild attempt at regaining possession.

At the end of the play, Young, Westbrook, and Pachulia were all on the ground, with Pachulia falling on Westbrook’s legs.

I should note that the play happened right in front of me at Oracle Arena — my media seat is aligned with the hoop the play happened …read more

Source:: East Bay – Sports


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