Stop talking smack about the Kardashian curse.
That’s the message delivered by ESPN/ABC basketball broadcaster Jeff Van Gundy during the first quarter of Friday night’s NBA Finals Game 4 telecast between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
The two teams meet tonight at 9 p.m. Eastern in Game 5, in what could be the close-out game for the Warriors, who have 3-1 advantage in their quest for the world championship title.
Van Gundy was alluding to Cavs center Tristan Thompson and his girlfriend Khloe Kardashian of Keeping Up with the Kardashians fame. The Cavs drafted Thompson in the first round of the 2011 NBA Draft as the fourth overall pick out of the University of Texas. Two years ago, he inked a five-year, $82 million deal with the team.
As the Inquisitr previously explained, there have long been stories about this “curse,” which supposedly exerts a negative effect on any male who gets romantically involved with a member of the Kardashian reality star clan.
For whatever reason or combination of reasons, and some perhaps tongue-in-cheek attributed it to the Kardashian curse or “kurse,” Thompson — who is a key member of the starting lineup led by LeBron James — pulled a disappearing act in the first three games of the finals.
In Game 1, Thompson scored zero points on 0-3 shooting in 22 minutes on the floor, during which he grabbed four rebounds. He attempted zero free throws. In Game 2, he managed to score eight points on 4-7 shooting in 21 minutes. He also hauled in four rebounds but again did not make it to the foul line. In Game 3, Thompson had no points (0-1) in 23 minutes of playing time, along with just three rebounds and, again, no foul shots attempted. In contrast, Tristan Thompson averaged eight points and nine rebounds per game in the 2016-2017 regular season.
“In 2016, Thompson had 30 rebounds and 32 points by the end of game three,” News.com.au recalled about Tristan Thompson’s role in the Cavs come-from-behind championship run.
The Game 4 blowout win for the Cavs saw an improvement in Thompson’s performance. He finished with five points on two for three shooting and one out of two points from the foul line, and 10 rebounds, in 36 minutes. Khloe and other Kardashian family members attended the game at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland.
“The substance of the ‘curse’ talk lies in the supposition that the cameras and media circus that follow the Kardashians wherever they go make it difficult for their romantic partners to focus on their own careers,” the Washington Post explained.
Van Gundy, the former New York Knicks and Houston Rockets coach, weighed in the Kardashian curse.
“I’ve noticed a lot, in this series, the debate why Tristan Thompson, has not played well. And he hasn’t played well. But the debate about whether his significant other Khloe Kardashian and the Kardashian curse is the reason, to me, is downright low rent…this Kardashian shaming is because she’s an easy target. And I don’t know her or her family. But I do know this: She deserves an apology from anybody who participated in that type of debate.”
Broadcast partner Mark Jackson remarked that he agreed with Van Gundy 100 percent. Van Gundy also noted that the spouses of LeBron James and Stephen Curry were never blamed for their husbands’ past struggles in the NBA playoffs.
Kardashian curse blame game?
Van Gundy may or may not have been responding to former NBA player and current ESPN analyst Jalen Rose who claimed last week, “There are three things in life that are certain to me: Father time, gravity, and the curse of the Kardashians. Tristan Thompson had zero points in two of the three games….”
“This isn’t the first time Khloe Kardashian’s been blamed for an NBA player’s bad year — she was called a distraction when she dated James Harden and Rashad McCants decided she was the reason his NBA career didn’t work out to what he thought it should have,” USA Today recalled.
Khloe and Kim were married to NBA players Lamar Odom and Kris Humphries, respectively, and both unions ended in divorce.
In an appearance on Fox Sports’ The Herd with Colin Cowherd last week, with Jason Whitlock sitting in as guest host, McCants clarified that he has no animosity toward Khloe Kardashian, describing her as a “good girl.”
The issue for the NBA free agent shooting guard, a member of the Minnesota Timberwolves from 2005 to 2009, was the media-perpetuated distraction owing to his relationship with a high-profile celebrity.
“The curse exists only in our minds–it’s a mental thing,” Mccants declared.
He credited Warriors’ power forward/center Draymond Green for taking Tristan Thompson out of his comfort zone in the first three games.
According to a study by the Harvard University Sports Analysis Collective, dating A-List — or perhaps D-List — celebrities might have an effect on athletic performance, however, as it detailed in a March 2016 blog post about the “Kate Upton Effect.”
“Understandably, we were inspired to look into the possibility of a Kardashian-specific effect and found quantitative support for what we all know to be true. We found a 12.8% performance decline from pre-dating to dating and then a 16.5% increase after breaking up.”
If Tristan Thompson and his Cleveland Cavaliers lose tonight, do you think the so-called Kardashian curse is to blame, or do you agree with Jeff Van Gundy about the unfair Kardashian shaming and that Khloe Kardashian deserves an apology?
[Featured Image by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP Images]