“D-Green is smart!”
NBA Miami Heat legend Udonis Haslem (43-retired) has added his voice to the criticism of Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green (33), who has sparked controversy with his violent behavior, suggesting that Green singles out players for violence.
Haslem discussed Green on the podcast “Playmaker” on Tuesday. “There are a lot of warriors in the NBA,” the 20-year NBA veteran said. There are guys who foul and protect their teammates,” he said. “People say, ‘Green’s crazy,’ but I think he’s smart. But I think he’s smart,” he said.
He went on to say that Green’s violent behavior was calculated. “He choked Rudy Gobert and punched Yusuf Nurkic in the face,” he said, adding that Green knows which players to target. He explained that Green picks players who are unlikely to retaliate.
Green was ejected from a game against the Phoenix Suns on Dec. 13 after being involved in an altercation. In the third quarter, he punched Nurkic in the face, and after a slow replay showed it was intentional, he was ordered off the court. During the scuffle, he struck Nurkic in the face with his right arm, causing Nurkic to collapse and complain of extreme pain.
It was the third ejection of the season for Knickic, who has also been involved in controversy in the past for punching teammate Jordan Poole in the face during practice. He also choked Kobe in a game against the Minnesota Timberwolves on March 16. After teammate Klay Thompson got into a nerve-wracking altercation with Minnesota’s Jaeden McDaniels early in the first quarter, he went to break up the fight and applied a choke on Kobe. It was a dizzying sight to behold, and he and Thompson were quickly escorted off the court.
Green was suspended indefinitely for his assault on Nurkic. He has now been ejected 18 times in his NBA career, the most by an active player. At the direction of the NBA Office of the Commissioner, Green has begun counseling for assaulting a player. The counseling is expected to last more than three weeks.
Haslem is a “Miami legend. He joined the Miami organization in 2003 and played as a “Heatman” until last season. He spent 20 years in the NBA in a Miami uniform. He announced his retirement from the game after last season and has since joined the Miami front office.