One game after finding himself at the center of controversy regarding his role in the injury that knocked All-Star forward Kawhi Leonard out of Games 1 and 2 of the 2017 Western Conference finals, Golden State Warriors center Zaza Pachulia had to leave Tuesday’s Game 2 early after suffering a right foot injury during the first quarter.
The 33-year-old big man appeared to injury his foot when he came down awkwardly after a dunk at the 9:32 mark of the opening period of Game 2 against the San Antonio Spurs:
After landing awkwardly on his right foot, Pachulia ran back on defense and stayed in the game. He’d benefit from a sweet behind-the-back feed from frontcourt partner Draymond Green two minutes later:
Reserve center JaVale McGee subbed in for Pachulia at the 5:06 mark of the first, and that wound up being the end of Zaza’s night:
Injury Update: Zaza Pachulia (right heel contusion) will not return. He will have x-ray.
— Warriors PR (@WarriorsPR) May 17, 2017
He’d finish with four points, two assists and a rebound in seven minutes of floor time. The Warriors would go on to crush the Kawhi-less Spurs, 136-100, to take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven conference finals.
Alright Spurs fans, whose voo doo doll was this? https://t.co/QqMkMbTdKu
— Jeff McDonald (@JMcDonald_SAEN) May 17, 2017
The extent of Pachulia’s injury isn’t yet clear, but the X-ray didn’t turn anything up:
X-ray for Zaza Pachulia's bruised heel was clear, will have MRI tomorrow.
— Janie McCauley (@JanieMcCAP) May 17, 2017
That MRI came back clean, too, according to Chris Haynes of ESPN.com, though Pachulia is considered “day-to-day” and it remains unclear whether he will be able to suit up for Game 3 at AT&T Center in San Antonio. The good news for the Warriors: they’ve got a long layoff before Saturday night’s tip for their starting center to get fully ambulatory and operational.
More NBA coverage:
– – – – – – –