- Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP
Kevin Love missed Game 3 of the NBA Finals after taking a blow to the head in Game 2 and suffering a concussion.
Much was made of how the Cleveland Cavaliers handled the moment when he sustained the concussion. Love was on the ground, holding his head, but returned to the game, only to leave later when he appeared dazed in the middle of a play. Some felt that the Cavaliers didn’t properly clear Love of having a concussion before he returned.
Love missed the rest of Game 2, and on Wednesday didn’t pass the NBA’s concussion tests, ruling him out of Game 3. ESPN later reported that Love was “really frustrated” with the Cavs’ insistence that he sit out.
On Thursday, Golden State Warriors center Andrew Bogut backed the NBA’s concussion protocol and issued a strong defense to those criticizing Love for missing the game.
“There’s probably people calling Kevin Love soft and those people are idiots,” Bogut said. “You don’t mess around with the brain. You can be a hero now in the NBA Finals in 2016 and in 2021 you will be sucking food through a straw. And you won’t give a [expletive] about what you did in 2016.”
According to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, Bogut suffered a concussion that kept him out of action for two weeks at the start of the season. Windhorst reports that Bogut called the concussion the worst injury of his career, while his wife said that his personality changed.
Love will reportedly be cleared to play in Game 4 on Friday, but nonetheless, in an era when player safety is considered more than ever, the Cavaliers and NBA made the right choice, regardless of how Love felt about it.