Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown called into question the condition of the Toronto Raptors’ custom In-Season Tournament court after slipping on the surface late in Friday’s win and hurting his groin.
“I think I might have strained my groin a little bit,” he said postgame, according to Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe. “We’ll see how it feels, but the court was just slippery all game.
“I think, as players, we’re all here for the In-season Tournament because it’s going to generate revenue, excitement, competition, but we’ve got to make sure the floor is safe to play on. We can’t put our players out there and risk their health. Tonight I thought the floor was unacceptable. I think guys were slipping all over the place, not just me.”
Brown appeared to injure his groin with just under nine seconds to play as he attempted to get open for an inbound pass with the Celtics up three.
The 27-year-old was immediately removed from the game and replaced by Al Horford.
Raptors forward Precious Achiuwa, who was guarding Brown on the play in question, agreed that the court’s condition was unsafe for the players.
“It was slippery,” he said, courtesy of Sportnet’s Michael Grange. “I fell a couple of times myself. The extra stuff is extra. I’m just trying to play basketball, at the same time, not trying to get hurt.”
Teams have deployed colorful new hardwood for In-Season Tournament games this month featuring the NBA Cup at half court. However, some of the playing surfaces have drawn criticism from players, including Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic, who complained about the New Orleans Pelicans’ court after slipping multiple times during their contest Tuesday. Days before, the NBA reneged on plans to use the Mavericks’ custom court due to a “manufacturing issue” but didn’t provide specifics.
“It was really slippery,” Doncic told The Dallas Morning News’ Brad Townsend about the Pelicans’ court. “And then some places the ball didn’t really bounce. So you know, if we’re going to have these courts we’ve got to make sure that it’s a stable court, so you can play on it. Like in Dallas, you know? It wasn’t stable, so we had to change it.”
Brown and the Celtics will next play in the NBA’s In-Season Tournament on Nov. 24 at the Orlando Magic.
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