No Joy In Spursville

The outlook wasn't brilliant for the Texas Five that day;
the Dubs led three to none, with but one more sad game to play.
And then when Curry drained a three, and Durant then did the same,
a sickly silence fell upon the patrons of the game.

A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest
clung to that hope which springs eternal in the human breast;
they thought, if only Leonard could, by miracle, play some more –
they'd put up even money, now, with Leonard on the floor.

But Aldridge was our hero now, or possibly Gasol,
and the former was a lulu and Pau no more can ball,
so that stricken multitude was left with only blame,
for there seemed but little chance of Kawhi's getting in the game.

Remembering Game 1--Spurs led!--to the wonderment of all,
Kawhi was winning one on five, the Dubs were at a crawl;
the ball was moving quickly, the defense holding tight
the lead had swelled to twenty-three, the Dubs were in a fight.

Then from ten thousand throats at home there rose a violent yell;
it rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
it knocked upon the mountain and recoiled upon the moor,
for Leonard, mighty Leonard, was writhing on the floor.

The game had been so easy, a big lead problem-free
the Spurs had dominated, it was there for all to see.
And when Kawhi rose up to score, to pad the growing lead
the Warriors had just one chance, to make poor Leonard bleed.

They knew their fate depended on destroying this one man
The cocky, wiggling Dubs were left with one successful plan.                                                   "We can't keep up with them," they thought, and knew they couldn't beg                               "We only have one good recourse"--to break poor Leonard's leg.

From the screens in San Antonio, there went up a muffled roar,
like the beating of the storm-waves on a stern and distant shore.
"Kill him! Kill the ZaZa!" shouted someone on down the street;
"Put a staple in his nostrils and burn his evil feet!"

"Fraud!" cried the maddened thousands, and echo answered fraud;
"They injured him on purpose! Your Security is flawed!"
They saw Kawhi's poor face grow cold, they saw his muscles strain,
and they knew that Leonard would not play in another single game.

The Dubs then went on a run, their progress unabated
Now they knew they had a chance, their worry satiated.
Their superior was now all gone, their victory assured
Hope now lived in Oakland town, no longer with the Spurs.

Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright;
the rings are shining somewhere with trophies twinkling in the light,
and somewhere men are laughing, and somewhere children shout;
but there is no joy in Spursville — mighty Leonard was knocked out.

[based on the classic Casey at the Bat by Earnest Thayer]