Draymond Green clawed and kicked his way into a suspension this postseason, and while the Rockets and Thunder may have quietly lobbied for Green to be suspended for his actions, the only lobbying that people will ever talk about is the one by LeBron James and the Cavs. Why? Simple: because it’s LeBron.
First of all, let’s just clear this up for anyone who doesn’t know: Draymond Green didn’t get suspended simply for throwing a shot to LeBron James’ groin. A lot of people are making it seem that way, and it’s just not true. Green had numerous incidents this postseason where he racked up flagrant foul points. Entering the Finals, he was one flagrant foul penalty one away from a one-game suspension and one flagrant foul penalty two away from a two-game suspension. He was assessed a flagrant one, and suspended for a game.
Draymond was piling up flagrant foul points & got suspended for accumulating another. Stop acting like he's suspended because it's LeBron.
— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) June 12, 2016
On top of that, James should not be suspended as well for his actions. What he did was disrespectful and it was rightfully ruled a physical taunt which earned him a technical foul, but it wasn’t illegal.
After the infamous groin kick to Steven Adams in Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals, some media outlets suggested that the Thunder or Cavs should try and bait Green into another flagrant foul and thus a suspension. Now that it’s been done, James is being heavily criticized for baiting him into the hit and the suspension.
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The technical foul given to James doesn’t seem to appease anyone who isn’t a Cavs fan. He didn’t do anything illegal, he just did something unsportsmanlike, but hey, it got the job done, didn’t it? If Steven Adams baited Green into a suspension, would we be hating on him? What if it was Kevin Durant or Russell Westbrook? Hell, what if it was Blake Griffin, a superstar who’s had many run-ins with Green in the past?
No, of course not, because none of them are LeBron and the narrative on him is not that he’s one of the greatest players of all time who has seemingly broken a record or passed a former legend on a statistical list every week this saeson, but that he’s overrated for playing in a weak Eastern Conference, he’s going to have a 2-5 Finals record, he’s “a b*tch” for “snitching” on Draymond Green, and that he won’t ever be as good as Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant because rings are the only determinant to most of the public’s arguments. He’s “The Self-Proclaimed King” who’s never allowed to fail, and when he does, it’s just another field day for most of the world.
If someone else got under Green’s skin, that would just be a smart play on their part and a very dumb play on Green’s part. Instead, it was LeBron who instigated and got Green to bite, automatically making him “a “b*tch” to many. It was disrespectful for James to step over him, no doubt, but it was smart move by one of the smartest players the league has ever seen.
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Former Warriors forward Stephen Jackson has had his incidents with different players and his ejections for saying too much. Jackson defended Green on Monday and took a shot at LeBron, claiming he and the Cavs “snitched” on Green, as if this play wasn’t going to be reviewed by the league anyways.
Stephen Jackson defends Green's actions saying "he's not trying to hurt anybody" & calling LeBron a "snitch" #smh.. pic.twitter.com/N1xO5rhz6a
— Cavs Nation TV (@CavsNationTV) June 13, 2016
It didn’t stop after the groin hit, as Green said something that got under James’ skin. LeBron’s reasoning for getting mad at Green after the hit were revealed in his postgame press conference.
Per Marc Spears of The Undefeated:
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“Some of the words that came out of his mouth were a little bit overboard,” James said. “And being a guy with pride, a guy with three kids and a family — things of that nature — some things just go overboard and that’s where he took it.”
According to sources, Green looked James dead in the face and called him a “b—-.”
One NBA player in earshot of the trash-talk told The Undefeated that James responded by saying that he was the father of three kids and a man.
Green responded back, according to the player, by saying: “You’re still a b—-.”
No one will know what was really fully said between the two, but Green was the one calling out James and possibly trash talking his family, and yet LeBron is the bad guy here. Anyone who’s played the game of basketball knows there’s trash talking involved all the time, but there is a line that you simply do not cross. If that line was crossed by Green, why are we hating on LeBron for it?