Never an athletic freak or naturally gifted with a unique skill set, Shane Battier of the Miami Heat has succeeded in the NBA thanks to hard work, effort and dedication.
And apparently dirty play, if you ask the Indiana Pacers.
Pacers big man David West (who’s been known to throw an elbow or two) told ESPN.com that he and the rest of his Pacer teammates are keeping their eyes on Battier, who they feel has been attempting to take out their knees.
Per David himself, via Brian Windhorst of ESPN:
“I (learned) to always have my guard up and protect my knees,” West said. “(Battier) has got this funny way of moving into your knees. We’re very conscious of that. We talk about making sure we protect our knees.”
West wasn’t the only Pacer to voice his displeasure with Battier’s play as center Roy Hibbert also chimed in:
Hibbert said he is wary of Battier when he’s on the floor and again called Battier a “dirty player.”
“I know what (Battier) brings to the game and it’s worked for him in the past. He has to do whatever he has to do to make sure his team wins,” Hibbert said. “I’m going to watch my knees, watch my groin. … To tell you the truth, I don’t care. I’m in there, I’m playing tough. He has to do what he has to do.
“Obviously I don’t like it but it’s a part of the game. I don’t want to look back say I gave in to a dirty player.”