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Fortune — good and bad — always plays a huge role in all sports


One of the truly wonderful things about sports – all sports – is about the only thing you really know is that you never really know.

Fortunes and chances can change in a split second through luck both bad and good, all expectations can go out the window in the blink of an eye.

It’s the drama of the games and of life and it goes back to something we’ve said here countless times:

Good luck or bad luck counts more than a lot of folks care to admit.

I submit as compelling evidence the Golden State Warriors and the Los Angeles Clippers and the last 36 hours.

Stephen Curry slips on a stupid spot of sweat and wrenches his knee; he’ll about out at least two weeks and how the Warriors withstand that absence no one can know.

Chris Paul makes a harmless move to stick his hand in to disrupt a play and fractures a finger and right now it looks like his entire playoff run might be over and, if it is, who among us has any faith the Clips can overcome it?

Those are horribly bad breaks, pure and simple; no one could have seen them coming and they do add to the drama and excitement of the times, which is a good thing for some fans and a disaster for others.

But here are two somewhat odd things to think about those two separate but very intertwined events.

I have thought since Sunday that the Warriors, while understandably devastated by not having Curry for a while, can get by the Rockets and now, thanks to the events of late last night, could possibly get Portland in the next round or a Clippers team without Paul and with Blake Griffin bothered by a sore quad once again.

I don’t know if that’s karma – and I know and appreciate karma or fate more than you know – or what but it does show that while bad fortune can come in one micro-second, things can turn in another instant.

It’s really a cool and infuriating thing about sports, isn’t it? Maybe of no solace to fans of either of those teams or for fans of the game as whole but it is something.

Oh, and one other quick point to make:

There was a measure of hullabaloo in the last week of the NBA regular season from fans and commentators who questioned whether the Warriors should all-out chase a historic 73-win season or somehow pull off the throttle to “save themselves” for the post-season.

I was a proponent for going for history because the chance might never come again and I ask this today:

If the playoffs go south for them because Stef Curry slipped on some sweat, would you rather have the bitter memories of post-season opportunities lost and nothing but a “close but no cigar” regular season?

Or would you like to have your name in the all-time NBA record book because you seized a chance that may never, ever come again.

I think there’s an obvious answer to that one.

I honestly would LOVE to see Roger Daltrey sitting next to The Global Ambassador tonight since he’s in town and has nothing to do.

I don’t know what I’m dreading more the rest of this week:

The surely incessant chatter and examination of Deflategate and the fact it’s back in the news, or the NFL draft/telethon that begins Thursday and ends, I believe, about the second week of June.

All I know is that being in Indy from Thursday afternoon through Saturday puts me right in the belly of the beast and it will be all I can do to ignore the noise.

It’s unpossible but I vow to give it my best shot.

I totally made them put Spurs-West Brom on the TV yesterday afternoon and when I asked She Who Supports Arsenal what had I become, she answered:

A fan, methinks.

And it reminded me of the Seinfeld episode where a suddenly caring Jerry couldn’t figure out what the salty discharge coming from his eyes was.

Totally odd feeling.

I’m not sure if you all saw this either on the tweeter machine when it broke yesterday afternoon or in the various dispatches through the evening but I needed to mention here that Dwane Casey was named winner of the PBWA’s Rudy Tomjanovich Award this season.

Among the members of the organization it is a prestigious award for a combination of coaching excellence and co-operation with the media (former winners are Gerry Sloan, Doc Rivers, George Karl, Frank Vogel and Steve Kerr) and I can attest to the seriousness with which we take both the nomination process and the voting.

And maybe it’s a bit in-house because the winner of it or our Magic Johnson and Brian McIntyre awards for, respectively, players and media relations staffs with the same attributes are media-centric.

But the point is that we need to recognize, and let the public know we do, coaches and players who take their media responsibilities seriously, who understand the job we have to do and treat everyone of us with respect.

I can honestly say that in five years of covering him, Dwane has never blown us off, he’s unfailingly polite and accommodating and, sure, he chafes at some of the inane questions and there are good days and bad in that regard but his consistent class and willingness to engage stands him apart.

I think those of you who see him through the prism of our words or soundbytes understand what he is and what he stands for.

This should affirm that and it is truly a worthy honour.

Oh yeah, if you’re guessing start times for Game 6 Friday, it really is impossible at the moment. We do know there will be games in Indiana, Charlotte and Portland and, perhaps, one in Houston.

My complete guess right is if there are three it will be 7 p.m.  in Indy, 8 p.m. in Charlotte and 10:30 p.m. in Portland because I have no faith in the Rockets. Otherwise, I can see a 6 p.m.-8:30 p.m. Indy-Houston doubleheader and a 8 p.m.-10:30 p.m. twinbill from Charlotte and Portland.

It’s a guess but an educated one so plan your lives accordingly.

TORONTO STAR | SPORTS | DOUG_SMITHS_SPORTS_BLOG

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