CHICAGO — After Kyrie Irving said Nassir Little’s dive near his legs during the Nets’ defeat in Portland on Monday night was a “bad” and “unnecessary” move that left him injuring his left ankle, the Trail assailants fired. Blazers back.
Little implied that Irving was “insane” and said he would do the same dive again.
“I would never intentionally hurt anyone. I have the utmost respect for Kyrie! But you’re all delusional if you think this is a bad piece, and you do it again,” Little tweeted Tuesday morning. “Idgaf what y’all are talking about.”
The game in question ended at 5:54 in Brooklyn’s 114-108 loss to the Trail Blazers.
Both players ran to a loose ball and Irving got there first. Small, way behind and with almost no chance of getting to the ball, pigeon.
Little reached out from behind Irving, bumped into the Nets guard’s left leg, and sent him into the Moda Center field.
For his part, Irving said the piece was not dirty, but reckless. He added that he plans to play on Wednesday when the Nets face the Eastern Conference-leading Bulls.
“I’ll be okay. It’s a bad one, just one of those bad plays, you know?” said Irving. “Yeah, I tried to get out of the way, but I just felt like it wasn’t necessary for him to dive that far off the ball.
“I just tried to get out of the way. Just play unnecessarily. I asked the ref, you just have to protect our players out there. It’s just totally unnecessary. I get that Nassir wants to go for the ball, but it’s like it’s a bad move. It’s all right.”
Irving lay there for a while before staggering gingerly off the field and being looked after by Nets trainers on the bench. Finally, he had a long chat with the umpires about the game before returning and concluding the match.
When asked what explanation the referees gave for the fact that no foul was called, he said he did most of the talking.
“They just listened. Listen. That’s it,” Irving said. “I was just like a man, that’s just not a good way to play basketball. I could have broken my ankle or done something worse. It’s just that there’s no place for it in our game.
“But of course I get the intent from Nassir, it’s nothing against him. It just could have been prevented. You know, I try to get out of the way, he dives between my legs. I jump out of the way at that point. I’m in the air and then I just twist my ankle. But it’s all good. We go on.”
Irving said he is confident he will fit on Wednesday.
“I’m available for Chicago,” Irving said.
Nets coach Steve Nash was more noncommittal.
“We’ll see. He’s fine. He finished the game. It was a pretty good little twist of the ankle,” said Nash, who declined to comment on the game. should check it out again.”
Nic Claxton (left hamstring tightness), James Harden (left knee hyperextension), Irving (left ankle sprain) are all doubtful to face the Bulls. LaMarcus Aldridge (right foot pain) and Joe Harris (left ankle surgery) are out.