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Around the NBA: Giannis exits Game 4 with knee injury, Kawhi out for Game 6

Milwaukee Bucks v Atlanta Hawks - Game Four Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Giannis exits Game 4 with hyperextended knee

During the 3rd quarter of Game 4 between the Milwaukee Bucks and Atlanta Hawks, Bucks Superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo suffered an injury when he hyperextended his knee after a defensive play at the rim.

Giannis left the game and as of now, no information on the severity of the injury has been released. He is expected to undergo imaging to determine the nature of the knee injury and his status for Game 5 is unclear.

Trae Young, suffering from bone bruise, hopes for Game 5 return

Just before the Bucks and Hawks tipped off for Game 4, Malika Andrews and Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported that Trae Young would miss the game with a deep bone bruise in his right foot.

Woj followed up with the news that Trae was working through rehab with the hopes of suiting up for Game 5, which is Thursday evening at 8:30 pm.

Kawhi Leonard ruled out for Game 6

Kawhi Leonard, who has not played since June 14th against the Utah Jazz in the previous round of playoffs, has been ruled out for Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals against the Phoenix Suns, per RealGM. In addition to Kawhi’s absence, the Clippers may also be without Ivica Zubac, who is currently listed as questionable after missing Game 5 with an MCL sprain in his right knee.

This is all pretty rough. We are in the Conference Finals of the NBA playoffs with stars going down left and right. You have to wonder if this is the toll of a 72-game season jam packed into 5 months. Normally, the NBA season runs 82 games over about 6 months. One less month with 10 less games doesn’t seem like to drastic a difference. However, this season rarely offered extended rest periods of at least 3 days and often demanded 3 games played over 4 days.

Carmelo Anthony wins inaugural Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion Award

Carmelo Anthony of the Portland Trail Blazers has been named the first ever recipient of the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion award, per Shams Charania of The Athletic.

What exactly is the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion Award? From an NBA press release:

NEW YORK — The NBA today announced the creation of the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion award, a new annual honor that will recognize a current NBA player for pursuing social justice and upholding the league’s decades-long values of equality, respect and inclusion.

The award is named after six-time NBA champion and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. The recipient will have advanced Abdul-Jabbar’s mission to drive change and inspired others to reflect on injustice and take collective action in their communities over the previous year.

The winner of the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion honor will select an organization to receive a $100,000 contribution on his behalf. The other four finalists will each select an organization to receive a $25,000 contribution.

Carmelo has selected Portland Art Museum’s Black Arts and Experiences Initiative as the recipient of the $100,000 donation.

Kevon Looney exercises option to remain with Golden State Warriors

Kevon Looney of the Golden State Warriors has exercised his $5.1 million option to remain with the team for the 2021-22 NBA season, per Woj.

Looney has been with the Warriors for the entirety of his five-year career. Over the course of those five years, Looney has gone from a reserve who mostly saw garbage time minutes to a 19-minutes per game player who started 34 of the 61 games he played in this season.

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