Zaza Pachulia's family threatened after Kawhi Leonard injury
Golden State Warriors center Zaza Pachulia's family has received threats after some fans were quick to blame him for injuring San Antonio Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals, according to Sam Amick of USA Today.
In the third quarter of Game 1, Leonard landed on Pachulia's foot and re-aggrevated an ankle injury that he sustained in Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinals against the Houston Rockets. The initial injury forced Leonard to miss Game 6 of the series. Leonard missed Game 2 and 3 of the series against the Warriors and is doubtful for Game 4 on Monday.
Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich was upset with Pachulia's role in the injury and compared it to "manslaughter" while talking to reporters before Game 2.
Pachulia has a wife, two sons and a daughter. Security guards were recently deployed to the entrance of his childrens' school in the San Francisco area, according to USA Today.
“I don’t blame everything on Pop, but what he said had a lot of influence (and) you had a lot of people where, unfortunately, you can’t control what everybody’s intelligence is,” Pachulia said. “(Fans) just hear the message, and it’s, ‘Ok, Pop said so and now let’s do this.’ It’s just wrong. You’ve got to think, and realize. Threaten me, but don’t threaten my wife or say something about my kids. It’s just wrong."
“Me as a person, as a man, I don’t mind dealing with it. But I hate to see my family deal with it. My wife and my kids who have nothing to do with it, who are very innocent. ... I just hate my family going through that. They don’t deserve that. … I’m not blaming everything on (Popovich), but he was a very big part of it.”
The Warriors lead the series 3–0.