This news was largely overshadowed by Derrick Rose's injury, but it is just as devastating.
For the Bulls, they were expected to go to the Eastern Conference Finals for one of the most anticipated rematches in history against the Heat. Derrick Rose's injury hurts his team, his fans, the sports writers, the commentators, everyone. The Bulls can still get past the Sixers without Rose, and with enough heart and determination, it's not totally outlandish to say we can still see that Heat rematch, BUT it won't mean as much without Derrick Rose, and we won't get a truly accurate idea of who's the better team.
For the Knicks, they're expected to lose against the Heat anyway, but to be manhandled the way they were Saturday, and then to lose such a powerful defensive force, it has to hurt so much. It just made the loss that much more painful.
Like Rose, Shumpert suffered a non-contact injury. During the 3rd quarter, the rookie attempted a behind the back move and his knee buckled, The NY Daily News
He fell to the ground in extreme pain and his teammates rushed to his side. ESPN
reports that he was eventually carried off the floor by fellow Knicks' rookies Josh Harrellson and Jerome Jordan.
"It hurts your spirits when you see your best defensive player go down like that," the Knicks' JR Smith told ESPN.
"We have a lot of people and hopefully someone can step up for him."
Point guard Baron Davis was just as crushed by losing Shumpert. "That's huge," Davis told The New York Post
. "He's our defensive specialist. Our energy guy. A dude who plays big in big games for us."
"My prayers are out for him," Amare Stoudemire said.
There's been a lot of talk that the compressed schedule of the 2011-2012 season has led to all these injuries. Dwight Howard is out, Kobe Bryant missed 7 games, Zach Randolph missed a large portion of the season. Ray Allen...
What we do know for sure is that the NBA lost two really great players Saturday, not forever, but for a while, putting a damper on the whole NBA Playoffs experience.
Kevin Love tweeted Saturday "Lets keep the rest of the NBA playoffs healthy. D Rose and Shump, speedy recoveries."
My response to that, WORD!!