Fighting for their playoff lives, every game is vitally important for the Golden State Warriors right now. They are already without Andrew Wiggins, Gary Payton II and Andre Iguodala, and now, on Friday night vs. the Hawks, the Warriors will be without Draymond Green as well.In the second quarter against the Clippers on Wednesday, Green was whistled for his 16th technical foul of the season, which results in a one-game suspension. You be the judge. It looked like Green sort of tossed the ball in the direction of Russell Westbrook after a made basket.
The league could still rescind the tech. It didn’t look like Green did much. But frankly, this is what happens when you put yourself in this kind of position. Officials can get jumpy with techs, particularly with Green’s reputation. It’s like constantly hitting with two strikes. You’re putting yourself at the mercy of an ump making a borderline call to ring you up. Last week, Steve Kerr was asked about Green playing with 15 technical fouls the rest of the season, and whether Green could go the rest of the way without getting another one.
“I’ve never said one word to Draymond, and he’s never gone over the limit,” Kerr said, via ESPN’s Tim MacMahon. “He always comes right up to the edge and then he stops. He knows how valuable he is, I don’t have to say anything to him. He knows that he can’t get that next [technical foul]; we need him.”For Kerr to suggest that Green has never gone over the limit is disingenuous. Green himself has admitted to probably costing the Warriors a championship when he couldn’t control his emotions in Game 4 of the 2016 Finals, when he delivered the infamous hit to LeBron James’ groin area that landed him in street clothes for Game 5. In 2019, he unloaded on Kevin Durant, who subsequently left the team. Prior to this season, Green punched his own teammate in the face.
Yes, Green has to play with passion, even borderline anger, to be the player the Warriors need him to be. But knowing the line is essential to operating at that level of intensity. Green crossed it, if only by a little, against he Clippers on Wednesday, and now Golden State, as of now, will be without him on Friday with their postseason fate up in the air.