How NBA Handles Draymond Green's Groin Kicks on Steven Adams is Reflection of Character


Source: (Hashtag Basketball - Brian Han)

Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green has often been regarded as the "glue" holding the most dominant regular season team in history together.

Sunday's Western Conference Game 3 133-105 loss against the Oklahoma City Thunder displayed that perfectly although not in the most flattering light.

 

The 26-year-old put up a career-low -43 plus/minus. In other words, it was the worst performance of any player on the floor last night.

The result?

The wheels fell off the rest of the team.

Guards Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson shot for a combined 5-of-19 from the three-point line. They were the only two Warriors players to score in the double digits.

To add insult to injury, the Thunders' All-Star duo, forward Kevin Durant and guard Russell Westbrook scored 63 points going 20-of-34 shooting from the floor.

Teammate Steven Adams, who often takes on the role of enforcer, has added punching bag to his resume.

To be more specific, Green kicked his leg laterally into the 22-year-old's groin for the second time in the series in what many are calling a deliberate move.

It brought the 7-foot center to his knees with about six minutes left in the second quarter.

But he never stooped down to Green's brand of competition.

As much as reporters tried to bait a controversial statement out of the New Zealander -- especially following the Game 1 debacle when he called the Warriors' backcourt "little monkeys," which he admitted was a cultural misunderstanding -- he managed to keep his composure.

"I'm not here to say whether it was or was not intentional," Thunders head coach Billy Donovan told reporters. "I don't know, but it has happened twice in the last two games."

Adams quickly corroborated that statement.

"I mean, it's happened before, mate," he said of the incident. "He's pretty accurate, that guy."

But the timing puts the NBA in a peculiar position.

The organization just issued a one-game suspension to Cleveland Cavaliers veteran guard Dahntay Jones, who punched Toronto Raptors center Bismack Biyombo between the legs even after Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals had been all but decided.

As a two-time offender this postseason, Green may have already gone too far.

But the NBA's darlings are down 2-1 to a team that's poised to take away the only thing that means more than a 73-9 record -- a championship.

If Green gets off with no penalty, it wouldn't be the first time the league held a double standard. After all, Jones is no star and Green certainly is.

The only people coming to the forward's defense are in his own camp including Warriors head coach Steve Kerr.

"There's contact, people's arms, legs flailing," he said after the game. "If they think it's on purpose, play the game, you know. This stuff happens all the time."

Kerr often feeds reporters a heavy dose of sarcasm during post-game interviews, but this time there was no ambiguity to his delivery.

Westbrook disagreed without much hesitation.

"Honestly, I think it's intentional," he said. "That's two times in the last two games. I don't think you can keep hitting somebody in their private areas."

Adams stayed above the fray and decided not to get sucked into the argument.

"It's not my call, mate," he said. "Just moving on."

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