The defending champion Golden State Warriors will be without a key starter for an indefinite period of time. Center Andrew Bogut suffered a concussion in Tuesday night’s season-opening victory over the New Orleans Pelicans and will not be able to return to the court until he undergoes and passes the NBA’s concussion protocol.
Bogut experienced the injury in the third quarter when Pelicans forward Dante Cunningham made contact with his head. Already playing with a mask to protect a broken nose, Bogut left the game with a laceration over his right eye, received stitches, and did not return as the Warriors won comfortably. Take a look at the play here:
While the play did not appear especially dirty at first glance, Bogut took issue with Cunningham’s actions:
Part of the issue could be that the seven-season veteran has a history with Golden State:
For the record, Cunningham received his own concussion test, which he cleared. That’s good for a New Orleans squad that was able to suit up just nine players for Tuesday’s opener.
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Meanwhile, the Warriors figure to be without Bogut for a little bit. It’s a safe bet to consider him unavailable for this weekend’s road games against the Houston Rockets (Friday) and Pelicans (Sunday). Golden State will miss him but has several replacement options, including starting backup Festus Ezeli or going small and playing Draymond Green at center. Basketball fans should remember the latter option as the tactic that allowed the Warriors to defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers in the NBA Finals.
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