Face hit this time in the elbow… a tough playoff for Sabonis

Sabonis is digesting the playoffs that are not easy.

The Sacramento Kings won 118-99 against the Golden State Warriors in Game 6 of the 1st round of the 2023 NBA Playoffs held at the Chase Center in San Francisco on the 29th (Korean time).

Domantas Sabonis played his best this season and played a crucial role in helping Sacramento reach the playoffs for the first time in 17 years. Sabonis, who has averaged 19.1 points, 12.3 rebounds, and 7.3 assists in 79 games during the regular season, and has a 61.5% field goal percentage, is predicted to have a strong chance of making the All-NBA team.

Sacramento, which has been playing spring basketball for the first time in a while, is in a tight battle with Golden State in the first round. With Sacramento winning Game 6, the fate of both teams was overshadowed in the last Game 7.

Sabonis’ playoff record so far is averaging 15.5 points, 11.5 rebounds, 4.3 assists and a 47.0% field goal percentage, which has fallen significantly compared to the regular season. In fact, the influence of the game has also decreased.

To make matters worse, it is Sabonis who is having a hard time due to unexpected ordeals. Clashes with opponents are becoming more frequent in the playoffs, where the heat of the players is getting hotter. 

Sabonis, who had already been fighting fiercely with his opponent since the first game. In the second game, there was a dizzying scene where Draymond Green’s foot stepped on the abdomen. Fortunately, he avoided serious injuries, but it was Sabonis who suffered a sternum contusion. Green was suspended for one game for committing a dirty play.

In Game 6, he even experienced a rare incident where he was hit by an opponent’s elbow while jumping in a jump ball situation. Savonis collapsed, clutching his face, unable to open his eyes properly for a while. There was bleeding under his eyes. 

It’s hard to see this as a play Kevon Rooney was deliberately trying to hurt. However, he moved his elbow excessively during the jump, and a dangerous scene was created as Savonis’ face was pressed. After the match, a post comparing Sabonis to a man-in-the-middle became a hot topic among fans. 

The curious thing is that the referee continued the game without calling a foul. Sacramento’s benches, including manager Mike Brown, strongly protested, and ‘ESPN’ broadcast commentator Jeff Van Gundy criticized, saying, “There are many calls that are difficult to call during the game. But you should not miss this scene.”

Savonis continued to play despite a large bruise under his eye. Although he only scored 7 points due to the aftermath of foul trouble, his teammates were able to lead the match to the 7th game thanks to their strength. 

Savonis, who was interviewed after the match, had clear bruises on his face, and his blood was still visible. Savonis, who was also comforted by the reporters, smiled and said that he was proud of his teammates’ fighting spirit to win. If there are no major problems, Sabonis is expected to appear in Game 7 as well.  

Can Sabonis’ will to win lead Sacramento to the second round? The final Game 7 between Sacramento and Golden State will be played on May 1.메이저놀이터

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