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Lakers' Anthony Davis Says Kicking Suns' Jae Crowder in Groin Wasn't Intentional

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVMay 26, 2021

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Los Angeles Lakers superstar Anthony Davis said his kick to the groin of Phoenix Suns forward Jae Crowder while taking a shot early in Game 2 of the teams' first-round playoff series was an accident.

"It wasn't intentional," Davis told reporters Tuesday, adding he thinks Crowder knows he didn't do it on purpose.

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Jae Crowder. Ouch 😬 pic.twitter.com/AFRLjqOeXz

The Lakers went on to score a 109-102 road win to level the series at one game apiece.

Davis received a Flagrant 1 foul following the incident in the first quarter, but he was still a dominant force for L.A. the rest of the way, finishing with 34 points, 10 rebounds, seven assists and three blocks in 40 minutes.

Crowder didn't reference the situation in his postgame remarks, instead focusing on the Suns' need to play better defense against the eight-time All-Star.

"One person shot 21 free throws," he said. "You can't expect to win when one player shoots 21 free throws."

Crowder tallied eight points, six rebounds and two assists in 29 minutes.

The game went right down to the final minutes with the Suns holding a 90-89 lead at the five-minute mark before L.A. went on a 20-12 run to end the game.

Phoenix can take solace in the fact it kept the game close despite point guard Chris Paul being limited to 23 minutes because of a shoulder injury suffered in Game 1.

"I took him out, that was all me," Suns head coach Monty Williams said. "Just looking at him holding his arm the way he was holding it, I just couldn't watch him run like that, trying to make plays. He battled. He's a warrior, we all know that. I just made a decision to take him out."

The series may hinge on whether Paul is able to make enough of a recovery to make a bigger impact in the remaining games. Williams didn't have an immediate update on the star's availability for Game 3.

Meanwhile, the reigning champion Lakers return home to Staples Center with a chance to take control of the series over the next two contests.

Game 3 is scheduled for Thursday, with a 10:30 p.m. ET tip-off on TNT.

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