Friday, 3 June 2016
Aussie Matthew Dellavedova nails Andre Iguodala down under
OAKLAND, Calif. — Game 1 of the NBA Finals, a 104-89 Warriors’ win Thursday, had a little bit of everything: a near triple-double by Cleveland’s LeBron James, rare off-shooting by the Warriors’ Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.
And oh yeah, another shot to a groin, and a smashed clipboard. Start with the groin — and no, Draymond Green was not involved.
The Warriors’ Andre Iguodala took the hand shot to the crotch from Cleveland’s Matthew Dellavedova right after the Cavs turned over the ball. Exactly where did he get hit?
“Where most men wouldn’t want to be hit,” Iguodala said.
With 34.1 seconds left in the third, the Warriors, who had led by 14 then trailed by one, came up with their fifth steal of the game, second by Green. As play headed back toward the Warriors’ end, the Australian Dellavedova was trailing Iguodala. He swatted from behind and landed a shot right into Iguodala’s groin.
There was the usual bluster and when reviews and replays and discussions ended, Dellavedova was assessed a foul.
And Iguodala came right back and stuck a 3-pointer to push the lead to 74-68 entering the fourth. Was the groin shot intentional?
“I’m not going to judge him or say anything negative about him. He’s out there playing hard, competing,” said Iguodala, last year’s Finals MVP. “There’s a lot of emotions going out there. I respect a lot of guys’ hustle in this league and you’ve got guys who have to get a little dirty and get a little physical to make a life and feed their families so I can only respect that. For me it was just keeping my composure and trying to do things for my team to help us win.”
Now the clipboard: The Cavs had rallied to within four points with a 7-0 third-quarter run. Warriors coach Steve Kerr called time, then punched and shattered a clipboard.
“Destruction tends to ease some of the anger. So I try to take it out on a clipboard instead of a player,” Kerr said. “It’s better that way.”
Kerr said his wrath was brought on because, “We came out after halftime and we completely lost focus and [were] throwing careless passes. We got lost defensively a couple of times, and we had to kind of regain our focus and our edge. The bench did that for us, so they did a great job.”
It wasn’t the first clipboard that gave its life to Kerr.
“He broke a clipboard in Madison Square Garden earlier this year — and it didn’t go so well,” Green said. “Congratulations to him on doing a better job.”