During the fourth quarter of a critical Game 6 in the 2021 Western Conference Finals, the Phoenix Suns blew open a close game with the Los Angeles Clippers as 16-year veteran Chris Paul made big shot after big shot, much of the time being defended by the pesky Clippers guard Patrick Beverley. The game had already been chippy between the two players and frustration was clearly evident on the part of Beverley, who was realizing in the waning moments of the game that Phoenix would soon clinch the series four games to two and end the Clippers dream season in which they found themselves in the Western Conference Finals for the first time in their history. As Chris Paul walked past Patrick Beverley, the Clippers guard pushed Paul in the back with enough force to send him sprawling to the floor. Beverley was immediately ejected from the game and the Suns began celebrating not only their imminent victory in the series, but the fact that they had “broken,” according to fellow Suns player Jae Crowder the Clippers spirits. Twitter feeds erupted with clips of the push as well as commentary about Beverley’s unsportsmanlike conduct and his cowardice for pushing Paul as he walked away. Beverley issued a statement of apology the next afternoon.
Key Apologia Strategies:
Daniels, T. (2021, July 1). Jae Crowder: Suns ‘knew we broke’ Clippers when Patrick Beverley pushed Chris Paul. The Bleacher Report. Retrieved from: https://bleacherreport.com/articles/10006841-jae-crowder-suns-knew-we-broke-clippers-when-patrick-beverley-pushed-chris-paul
Nesbitt, A. (2021, July 1). Patrick Beverley ejected for cheap shot of Chris Paul during timeout of game 6 of Western Conference Finals. USA Today. Retrieved from: https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ftw/2021/06/30/patrick-beverley-ejected-cheap-shot-chris-paul-during-timeout/7822544002/
Pickman, B. (2021, July 1). Patrick Beverley apologizes for shoving Chris Paul: “Emotions got the best of me.” Sports Illustrated. Retrieved from: https://www.si.com/nba/2021/07/01/patrick-beverley-apologizes-chris-paul-shove