The NBA finally made a decision not to suspend Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green after accidentally kicking Oklahoma City Thunder center Steve Adams in the groin in Game 3 of the Western Conference finals.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical, the incident initially gave Draymond Green a flagrant-1 during the game. After the NBA reviewed the video of the incident, they decided to raise the case to flagrant-2 and Green was fined $25,000. Fortunately, the league did not suspend him and he will be available for Game 4.
“After a thorough investigation that included review of all available video angles and interviews with the players involved and the officials working the game, we have determined that Green’s foul was unnecessary and excessive and warranted the upgrade and fine,” said Kiki VanDeWeghe, the NBA vice president of basketball operations and de facto Dean of Discipline. “During a game, players – at times – flail their legs in an attempt to draw a foul, but Green’s actions, in this case, warranted an additional penalty.”
Chris Mannix of The Vertical believes that the NBA made the right decision not to suspend Draymond Green. He reasoned out that the magnitude of the moment became a huge factor in the league’s decision. It is undeniable that Green is a big factor in the Warriors’ success. He managed to establish a double-double almost every game and his dominance under the basket is irreplaceable. If Green will be suspended, the Warriors will surely be in big trouble and there is a higher chance that it will cost them their series against the Thunder.
Way back in 2007, the same things happened between the Phoenix Suns and the San Antonio Spurs. Robert Horry extended his hips sending Steve Nash to the scorer’s table. Suns big men Amare Stoudemire and Boris Diaw did not like Horry’s action and stood up for their teammate. Both Stoudamire and Diaz were suspended in Game 5 and eventually cost them the NBA championship title.
Though the suspension was not given, Steve Adams remains confident that they can beat the Golden State Warriors with or without Draymond Green. The Oklahoma City Thunder are now leading the series to 2-1 and it seems like they already find a way to defeat the Warriors. However, they should expect a tougher competition in Game 4 since the Warriors have a reputation to guard being the reigning NBA champion and the team having the 73-9 record.
Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons