During the tirade that Draymond Green launched this season in Oklahoma City at halftime over his role in the offense, he apparently had to be restrained by teammates from going at Steve Kerr. We already knew this; Lisa Salters had reported on this on the sideline:
But the latest from Sports Illustrated reminds us of exactly what went down during the game:
Sometimes Kerr is the object of his ire, as occurred at Oklahoma City in February, when the coach singled out Green during a halftime film session. They had to be restrained from each other in the locker room. As the Warriors took the floor for the second half, trailing by 11, Walton begged Green to apologize, for fear Kerr would bench him. "I'll do that later," Green said. "This whole team is about to follow my passion, my anger." In the huddle, Kerr drew up a play on his grease board with only four names. "Where am I?" Green hollered. "Where is my name?"
"You're playing?" Kerr asked.
"Yeah, I'm playing!" responded Green, who logged a team-high 44 minutes. Golden State came back from a nine-point deficit with less than four minutes left to win in overtime. "We're not a crazy group, and you need a little crazy," Kerr says. "The Bulls needed Dennis Rodman. The Spurs needed Stephen Jackson. I have a potty mouth, so when Draymond and I go back and forth, there's some 'Hey, f--- you. No, f--- you.' The other guys are like, 'Oh, s---.' But that conflict--between Draymond and me, Draymond and the opponent, Draymond and the ref, Draymond and the world--gives us our edge."
OK, can I ask a question? Who actually says, "this whole team is about to follow my passion?" Who says something like that? That's a ridiculous quote, even for the NBA.
Anyway, Kerr's right, you need crazy. It's interesting because Green launched 20 shots in the Warriors' Game 1 loss to the Thunder this week, and has had to restrain himself from picking up technicals. Green also actually benefits a lot from respect from the officials, who have shown a lot of restraint in not T'ing him up for more in recent playoff games.
You do wonder if this is going to be the conflict that could eventually cause trouble with the Warriors' impeccable chemistry. Green believes in himself. He wants to shoot, wants to be part of the offense; that's what the original tirade was about -- Green felt that Kerr was undermining his confidence. How's that going to change if the Warriors were to add, say, Kevin Durant?
The most likely scenario is that it doesn't, and the Warriors continue to dominate for years to come. But as we document the process of what looks like a dynasty forming, these types of stories are important to document.