Jusuf Nurkic had some words for NBA analyst and championship center Kendrick Perkins after the Portland Trail Blazers made easy work of the Denver Nuggets in Game Four. Post game, Nurkic called the ESPN commentator a “clown” who would be a “mascot in today’s NBA” following a Perkins tweet questioning Nurkic and Enes Kanter’s defensive acumen after Game 3.
“I don’t know if I can talk about defense, some guy, clown out there saying I’m one of the worst in the league. The guy named, I guess he’s an analyst, ESPN guy Perkins, the big fella Perkins, Kendrick Perkins. I guess in this league today, he’d be a mascot, I don’t know why he claimed that and I like him as a person too. To say that stuff that was weak, I know he got to get with tweets, but I’m not here for that. Coming from the guy who couldn’t play in this league now.”
Perkins’ initial tweet on Thursday:
Mike Malone flat out coached Terry Stotts!!! Nurkic and Kanter are the worse defensive bigs in the NBA! Btw shoutout to Austin Rivers tonight for proving all the haters wrong...I just remember them saying he was in the NBA because of his Pops. Carry the hell on...— Kendrick Perkins (@KendrickPerkins) May 28, 2021
Nurkic’s Game Four included 17 points, six rebounds, two blocks, one assist and one steal. More importantly, he kept MVP favorite Nikola Jokic to 16 points, nine rebounds and one assist.
Perkins later responded giving Nurkic credit, but reminding him that he was no slouch on the defensive end of the floor.
I love it young fella! But one thing about old Kendrick Perkins is that I locked up the best on them...no help or double just straight up 1 on 1 Perk you got him! Good game tho. Carry the hell on... https://t.co/g3xFeZaGJa— Kendrick Perkins (@KendrickPerkins) May 29, 2021
Perkins averaged 5.4 points, 5.8 rebounds, 1.2 blocks and 1 assist over a 15-year career with the the Boston Celtics, Oklahoma City Thunder, Cleveland Cavaliers and New Orleans Pelicans. He was part of the Celtics’ 2008 title run.