Dillon Brooks of the Grizzlies was ejected after a hard foul on the Warriors’ Gary Payton Jr., but is any penalty or fine going to do justice?
Payton fractured his elbow on the fall and will miss the rest of the series — and essentially the rest of the playoffs.
The initial fear of an elbow fracture has been confirmed by the team and we are awaiting word on the specifics after an MRI.
The expectation is a non-displaced radial head fracture where no surgery is needed but Payton would be forced to miss a minimum of 4-6 weeks — which would end his season unless the Warriors can make it late into the NBA Finals.
The initial report was for inconclusive X-rays which would fit the best-case scenario; however, there is still a fracture to mend.
Treatment is typically carried out without a cast — only a sling and early range of motion while allowing healing.
Just as Steph Curry and Klay Thompson are rounding into full form for Golden State, this bad news comes to slow down the team’s momentum.
At least Draymond Green’s facial laceration was nothing more significant.
Not saying the foul that caused the ejection was intended to injure, but a just approach — a la eye for an eye — would have Brooks sit out until Payton returns from the fracture.
Unfortunately, that will not be the case.
Memphis will be at full strength in the Western Conference Semi-Finals, while Golden State plays way short of 100 percent.