Famously, Bill Russell used to vomit in the locker room before every game for his Boston Celtics. He would get so worked up vomiting was the only way to deal with the intensity he wrought on himself before going out and dominating for 48 minutes. Red Auerbach once told him to vomit when he had forgotten to do so. We’re pretty sure that’s not what happened to Kenneth Faried last night in the Denver Nuggets 112-106 victory over the San Antonio Spurs.
Before last night’s game in Denver, Faried had cold and flu-like symptoms. It’s winter time, and the bug is going around. But rather than take the night off, Faried soldiered through, and ended up with a double-double, 19 points and 11 boards to help the Nuggets stave off a late rally by the Spurs. Not only that, but early on in the fourth quarter, after Faried had done much of his damage, cameras caught him with a towel near his mouth. Teammate, Kosta Koufos recognizes what’s happening right away and jumps off the bench like he just got called in late to a close game. Ty Lawson doesn’t realize what’s happening, but eventually he gives Faried some room too. It’s never fun to vomit, but it’s even less so when cameras are on you and you have to go out and play one of the best teams in the league, the Spurs.
Before the vomiting on the bench, Faried was instrumental in helping the Nuggets battle against the Spurs’ bigs. Yes, Tim Duncan finished with 31 points, 18 rebounds and five blocks, but he had to take 25 shots to get there, and only made 11 of them (44 percent from the field, when he’s near 50 percent this season). Aside from Tiago Splitter‘s 10 points, no other big did much damage against the sick Faried and the triumvirate of Denver centers. Despite Duncan’s poor shooting night, and Faried’s wrenching stomach on the bench, the young Denver power forward was complimentary of San Antonio’s Hall of Fame big man. Saying about Duncan:
“He’s just smart. He knows what he’s doing and he knows the game. He knows how to be crafty. A lot of times, he’s just plain smart. He finishes at the rim with ease. You barely see him jump off the ground and you wonder how he gets all these rebounds. He knows rebounding and boxing out.”
Even though the presence of Duncan didn’t help matters, and his condition would have most of us curled up in a fetal position in bed, Faried wasn’t content with his 19 and 11 performance in just 29 minutes. He said after the game, “I kept fighting, but it was so hard to produce like I could have. Looking at the numbers, everybody would say I did pretty good. Personally, I believe I can do even better if I was healthy.”
We think he did pretty good, all things considered, but Denver fans have to be happy with his performance and his hunger to do more.
The only two instances of in-game booting we can remember were Phoenix Suns coach Alvin Gentry blowing chunks into a trash can during Game 5 of the 2010 Western Conference Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers (the Suns lost the game as the Lakers went on to their second consecutive title), and Sean Williams throwing up on the Dallas bench last season. Gentry, however, was just on the sidelines, and while coaching can take a lot out of someone, he wasn’t playing in the game. The next time you’re huddled over the toilet feeling like your whole world is crashing around you, remember Kenneth Faried. At least you don’t have to play a professional basketball game in front of a television audience and thousands of spectators while you’re trying to keep your lunch down.
Can you think of any other in-game vomiting incidents?
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