One of the biggest talking points coming out of this weekend's round of playoff games was the injury to Ja Morant.
During Game 3 of the series between the Golden State Warriors and the Memphis Grizzlies, Ja Morant was being doubled by Andrew Wiggins and Jordan Poole, the latter making contact with his leg from Morant's blindside. Morant immediately showed signs of pain and went to the locker room.
There have been accusations leveled at Jordan Poole of 'dirty play', with many suggesting that Poole intentionally injured Ja Morant.
Morant himself suggested that the Warriors were showing their double standards regarding the incident, especially considering what happened with Draymond Green and Dillon Brooks in Game 2. Jordan Poole himself denied intentionally hurting Ja, saying he has never approached any basketball play with that mindset.
And now, a professional doctor has explained why it is ludicrous to think Jordan Poole intentionally hurt Ja Morant.
Dr. Brian Sutterer, an expert in sports medicine, did a deep dive into Morant's injury and explained why it is almost impossible for Poole's play to have caused the significant injury that Morant suffered. Sutterer noted that while Poole did make contact, it was so insignificant that it could not have caused the injury (2:03 onwards).
“If we look at it from this angle, it’s even more implausible to think that 1. This was intentional and a dirty play. 2. That it would actually cause enough force to result in a major injury. Here as Poole’s right arm comes in, he certainly does make contact with Ja Morant’s knee. But then you can see here, that there’s not really anything that he’s actually able to grab on. If anything, he’s just going to be grabbing the patellar tendon in the front of his knee. He doesn’t have a big enough grip to actually force the knee outward to result in any sort of significant injury. His fingers are barely grasping on there. There is nowhere enough force in this grab to result in a major ligament or knee injury.”
There have been many people who have come to Poole's defense and said that it wasn't a dirty play. Charles Barkley jokingly remarked that he had been kissed harder than that. Whereas Klay Thompson first took a shot at Dillon Brooks while defending Poole, and then joked that Poole did not have the strength required to injure Morant on that play.
Stephen Curry also defended Poole, noting that while Morant's injury is unfortunate, suggesting that Poole made a dirty play is ridiculous. The Grizzlies will be massive underdogs against the Warriors with Morant. But they have shown that they are capable of winning without him. If Morant is out for a significant amount of time, the rest of the team has to step up in his absence.