SAN DIEGO — A preseason game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Golden State Warriors held at the Valley View Casino Center was called off late in the third quarter Saturday because of poor conditions on the court, with players from both teams continually slipping on wet spots.
Officials discontinued the game with 2:16 left in the third quarter after Warriors guard Leandro Barbosa slipped on the court. At that point, the Lakers led 85-70.
“They felt that there was a possibility of players getting hurt,” said Lakers coach Byron Scott, who said he spoke with Warriors interim coach Luke Walton and that both agreed the game should be called off.
Said Walton: “It seemed to be on that left side of the court in front of our bench was the worst.
“One time we were running, I was holding my breath a little bit,” Walton said. “The players were aware of it, they were playing. [Andre Iguodala] told me at halftime he was playing a little bit on the cautious side just because he didn’t want to risk anything, which we were obviously fine with.”
Said Warriors center Marreese Speights: “It was bad. I don’t know why we played that game. It was dangerous.”
Warriors forward Draymond Green was asked if he’d ever experienced anything like tonight’s cancellation, and he said, “Snow day.”
Beginning this season, the Valley View Casino Center is the home of the San Diego Gulls hockey club, an affiliate to the NHL’s Anaheim Ducks, so ice is a potential factor.
Officials had spoken with both coaches earlier in the game as players continued to slip on the court, and the possibility that the game could be called off was mentioned.
“It was a little iffy,” Warriors guard and 2014-15 NBA MVP Stephen Curry said of the court, adding that there were spots where it felt as if players’ feet could slip from underneath them. “Thankfully nobody got injured. We gave it all we could. Once [Leandro Barbosa] slipped at the top, started messing with knees, ankles and stuff like that, I don’t think it’s worth it. Obviously you feel for the fans, looking forward to this game, who paid good money, but in the long run, obviously you want everybody healthy for the regular season.
“I’m sure it was in people’s heads, but when you’re out there, it’s really hard to turn it off, which actually adds to the danger of it because you might be thinking about it once you have an angle to make a move or you start to get aggressive,” Curry said. “It’s hard to brace yourself for what may happen.
“I tried not to do anything too crazy. I even slipped making a move, was able to catch myself, and not lose the ball, still made the shot, but still, that kind of uncertainty is hard to play with.”
Fans were clearly unhappy and chanted, “Refund!” after both teams left the court. A Lakers official said fans who kept their ticket stub will be given a full refund after noon Monday at their point of purchase.
“I thought they were going to call the game before we started, because it was just too dangerous to play on, people slipping left and right,” Lakers guard Nick Young said. “We don’t want nobody to get hurt.”
Lakers forward Metta World Peace was asked if he would want to play on the court again next season.
“Hopefully next year they change it,” World Peace said. “It’s not a great floor, especially when you’ve got the MVP out there.”