Nurkic was jumping for a rebound and came down awkwardly in a number of bodies under the jar. After hitting the bottom, the Nets players saw the seriousness of the accident and sprinted away.
The arena quickly went into a hush as Blazers medical employees quickly rushed to Nurkic.
Portland coach Terry Stotts called the accident”devastating” but wouldn’t say more about Nurkic’s state beyond that he had been taken to a hospital.
It’s really a crushing blow to the Blazers, who have already been surging recently even though a knee injury into CJ McCollum that has sidelined him the past fourteen days.
Nurkic, 2 4, is averaging 15.4 points and 10.3 rebounds in 71 games this season. In Monday’s game, a 148-144 Portland triumph to clinch a playoff berththat he had 32 points and 16 rebounds before exiting.
“It’s tough, man. To see a few of your brothers going down like that — I just do not understand what to say,” Kanter said after the game. “But tonight I am going to go home and beg for him, man. As this really is much larger than basketball. We clinched the play off but we cannot even celebrate it. … He had been a huge part of our family. Not our team, our family.”
“no one could really say any such thing,” he said.