It was game four of the NBA Finals. The final three minutes of a blowout. Garbage time. That's when LeBron James decided to incite Draymond Green, stepping over the Golden State Warrior while he lay on the ground. How did Green — ever prideful — respond to the King's provocation?
He hit LeBron in the balls.
Referees quickly lit Green up with a flagrant-one foul, a call that does not automatically necessitate a suspension. But, later, the NBA — always eyeing to extend a playoff series, what with the tens of millions of dollars earned with every extra match — banned Green from playing in game five, a callous and petty move by an organization more craven for dollars than fair play. In other words: total bullshit.
The rest is history: The Warriors never recovered from Green's suspension and Andrew Bogut's injury, and they choked a sure-thing back-to-back championship.
But, really, we blame NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, of course: Let the players play!
This is way off, not only factually but with the charge that Green was suspended by the NBA because it wanted to make more money on the playoffs.
In fact committing four flagrant fouls in the NBA playoffs does "necessitate" a suspension (What's wrong with plain old "require"?):
Under league rules, any player who accumulates four flagrant foul points over the course of the playoffs will be automatically suspended for one game, and every additional flagrant foul will result in either a one-game suspension (for a Flagrant Foul 1) or a two-game suspension (for a Flagrant Foul 2).
It's surprising that the Warriors tolerate---even encourage---Green's immature behavior on the basketball court. That suspension probably cost the team the championship last year, since the Warriors were ahead three games to one at the time.
Green is a great basketball player who's emotionally childish. Surprising that a usually level-headed Steve Kerr doesn't take Green aside and ask him to cool it with the tantrums for the good of the team.
As a Warriors fan, I'm shocked by Green's behavior and that of many other players in the league, who often act up when called for a foul when the instant replay usually shows that their mini-tantrums have no merit.
I don't know how the NBA trains it referees, but it obviously teaches them that part of the job is to take a lot of shit from the many prima donna players.
Labels: Language, Sports, Warriors Stadium