Kendrick Perkins left Tuesday night’s game with what now is being reported as a sprained left MCL and he won’t be back for at least the rest of the West Coast trip. Luckily for the Cs, this trip through the Western Conference has them facing two teams that just overhauled their rosters (Denver and Utah) and one that just traded away their, albeit bloated (contract and waistline), starting point guard (Clippers) for an injured player. Sprinkled in this sea of unknown will be a tough game against Phoenix, a recent bugaboo of the Celtics, and the team they just beat handily on Tuesday night (Warriors).
All signs point to the notion that if Perkins had to miss some time, right now wouldn’t have been the worst time. He can head back to Boston, get treatment for his left knee, and more importantly get some rest for his right. Still, the mystical cynic in me can’t help but think this could have been prevented if Kendrick Perkins wasn’t such a jerk.
Okay, now that I have your attention, let me explain. Kendrick Perkins is a jerk.
Okay, I can see by your disapproving look that you disagree. Let’s try this again. Kendrick Perkins is a jerk but that’s what makes him so loved and valued by the Boston Celtics. Eh? Well I don’t care I’m going with it.
Perkins is one of the consummate league leaders in technical fouls, trash talks his mouth off during games, and (what sticks in my craw most) flails his arms back to intentionally try and hurt his opponents. On the talking front, legend has it that Perkins is so quiet during his everyday life just so he can use most of his allotted speaking time during the game disparaging other players. And I’m cool with that. Trash talking is part of the game. But, as I mentioned before, the arm flailing is what really gets me. Trying to smack someone in the face is not basketball.
If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, watch this:
If you still didn’t see the multiple attempts (one successful) to catch Ekpe Udoh in the face with an “errant” arm flail, here’s the one that connected in slow-mo:
Warning: I’m about to get silly-parental about this.
Perkins could have poked Udoh’s eye out. More importantly, his teammate Glen Davis is probably one more Billy Bob concussion from smelling salt implants. Does he want to see someone go down that road by his own hands?
I know you don’t care about the health concerns but what about it just being a punk move. I came down pretty hard on Dwight Howard last season when his elbows were causing havoc to opposing big men so I’d be remiss if I didn’t call Perkins out for this. Big men may get jostled a lot but it’s part of their job. It doesn’t give them license to smack someone in the face. It’s pretty clear that Perkins was frustrated for A) getting embarrassed by a rookie and B) not being able to finish anything around the basket.
I know the Perkins injury is not a direct result in him being a curmudgeon on the court, but I would be interested to see if the number of Celtic injuries decreased if they cut down on the Dwight Howard Treatment and the crotch shots.