The biggest story in the NBA this week has been the tension between Kevin Durant and Draymond Green. While it boiled over at the end of regulation during the Golden State Warriors’ overtime loss to the Los Angeles Clippers earlier this week, it’s evident that this goes much deeper than an incident at the end of a game.
Green was suspended for a game without pay for conduct detrimental to the team, and so far, we knew that he challenged Durant about his free agency and called him a “b*tch.” Now, we know the extent to which Green did both things, thanks to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports.
Haynes wrote that the latter was basically Green saying “you’re a b*tch and you know you’re a b*tch.” While calling him that was derogatory and mean-spirited, it’s not exactly stunning that Green would challenge someone to that extent. However, what he allegedly said about Durant’s potential free agency at the end of the season was what led to the team mandating he miss a game.
Via Yahoo Sports:
But what ultimately led to Green’s suspension, sources said, was a remark in which he dared Durant to bolt in free agency next summer. Durant has a player option for the 2019-20 season, and the Warriors want their superteam intact for the opening of their new arena, the Chase Center, in San Francisco next season.
Green blurted to Durant something along the lines of, “We don’t need you. We won without you. Leave,” sources said.
That’s about as harsh of a thing to say to Durant as Green could, especially because that’s a take not shared by the Warriors’ brass. In fact, Haynes wrote that Durant “cringed” at one point during the verbal sparring, which was when it was obvious that this “went from a typical competitive basketball argument to a personal shot that cut deep.”
Green is someone who plays with an edge and an intensity to him that is pretty well-documented. It’s also known that this intensity has been turned onto people in his organization in the past, with Green himself admitting he once got into a spat with Steve Kerr that he thought would lead to him getting traded. While this is generally a thing the Warriors have been able to use to their advantage, it very obviously backfired when Green went after Durant.