Draymond Green has been at the forefront of the ongoing rivalry between the Warriors and the Clippers, and took it to the next level by selling t-shirts that displayed a phrase he used to zing L.A.’s head coach.
Green and Doc Rivers went back and forth a bit through the media, after an incident where L.A.’s Dahntay Jones bumped Green during a postgame interview. Jones was fined by the league, Doc Rivers mocked Green’s lack of toughness, Green responded by saying “Cool story, Glenn,” and the t-shirts were printed and made available for sale.
But Green pulled the shirts shortly thereafter, saying he didn’t want anyone to interpret what he was doing as a lack of respect for Rivers.
From Diamond Leung of Bay Area News Group:
Not 48 hours after the shirts went on sale, Green put an end to it and reiterated that he had “the utmost respect” for Rivers.
“A former player, he’s one of the guys who paved the way for me,” Green said. “So I respect all former players. And he’s a champion. He’s proved over the course of time his worth.
“I took the shirts down because I know at the end of the day it’s all fun and games. With doing the T-shirt line, if something catches, you use it. But I just knew people would try to make it out to be more than it really is, so I took it down. People try to make it as if I don’t respect Doc.”
In only slightly more important Draymond Green news, Green may miss Tuesday night’s contest against the Clippers. And of course, he used it as another opportunity to zing the Clippers.
Warriors forward Draymond Green might not play Tuesday in the team’s final regular-season meeting with the Los Angeles Clippers because of what he said was inflammation in his shins.
The soreness combined with the fact that the Warriors have already clinched the top seed in the Western Conference with nine games left led to Green’s being listed as questionable with the minor issue. …
“I’m sitting out,” Green joked Monday. “I’ve got Blake-itis.”
The Clippers would need to get to the second round of the playoffs to face the Warriors in a seven-game series — which is something we should all be rooting for, simply from the standpoint of pure entertainment.
Andre Iguodala is a smart businessman who is heavily invested in tech startups (as are several Golden State Warriors players). That — and the fact he’s a famous NBA player — made him a good guest on CNBC’s Power Lunch show Monday.
Iguodala also has a few good connections to the thinking of the Golden State Warriors’ free agents Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson. Here is his response when asked about free agency and the Warriors on the show.
Of course, he said he expects Durant and Thompson to come back to the Warriors, what did you expect him to say? However, it was the exit line that got noticed:
“Nobody’s going to the Knicks. Sorry.”
More and more it’s looking like that.
Sources have said Thompson is staying with the Warriors since the start, he was never in play. Durant and the Knicks have been linked all season, but suddenly rumors of him going to Brooklyn with Kyrie Irving (and maybe Durant’s good friend DeAndre Jordan) have gotten a lot louder around the league. Brooklyn may be the frontrunner, with the Clipper still on the fringes of the conversation. The Warriors may be on the outside looking in.
The Knicks want a meeting with Kawhi Leonard, but that is a two-team race between the Raptors and Clippers, with Toronto seeming to have the edge after winning a title.
The smart play by the Knicks, if this happens, is not to spend wildly on the next tier of free agents but rather to sit on their cap space, develop and add to their young core, and wait for another star. That seems to be the plan, but how long before James Dolan gets impatient and forces something stupid to happen. For the Knicks, that’s always a concern.
Portland is always on the search for some quality play and shot creation at the forward spots (something that is a long-running weak spot), and with this trade the Trail Blazers get a little better.
Atlanta is sending Kent Bazemore to Portland in exchange for Evan Turner in a straight up, two-player trade, a story broken by Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Both players are in the final year of their somewhat overpaid contracts, Bazemore will make $19.3 million while Turner will pull down $18.6 million. Atlanta does save about $640,000.
This trade makes a lot of sense for Portland. Bazemore is a quality wing rotation player who averaged 11.6 points per game, is athletic and can create shots. Last season Bazemore was on his way to a career year until a mid-season ankle injury, and while he did come back to the court he was never healthy and the same player. He’s not a knock-down three-point shooter but he has usually been at around 35 percent or a little higher five of the past six seasons (he was down to 32 percent last season because of the ankle injury). This is more than just Rodney Hood insurance, this is an upgrade.
Turner was the guy Portland counted on as another shot creator, but he could not do that consistently or under pressure. He averaged 6.8 points per game last season, shot 21.2 percent from three, and is not a great defender. He is a popular teammate and good in the locker room (something useful with a young Hawks squad), but this is not an upgrade for the Hawks.
Then why did Atlanta make this trade? Good question. The franchise does save $640,000, which is helpful but not earth-shattering. Maybe it’s a favor to Bazemore to get him on a team that went to the Western Conference Finals a season ago and is a threat going forward. However, the best reason may be the Hawks have three young players they like — Kevin Huerter, plus just-drafted DeAndre Hunter and Cam Reddish — at the same spot and this frees up minutes for them to play.
Whatever the reason, the deal can get done soon, before free agency opens.
Knicks owner James Dolan escalates fight after fight after fight after fight after fight after fight after…
One of his latest battles has been with the New York Daily News, the newspaper that urged him to sell the team. The Knicks have repeatedly denied Daily News reporters access. Barring the Daily News from a recent press conference apparently crossed a line.
The NBA announced today that the New York Knicks have been fined $50,000 for violating the NBA’s rules regarding equal access for media.
The Knicks did not allow the New York Daily News access to their post-draft press conference on Friday, June 21 while allowing all other credentialed media who cover the team to attend.
The organization has agreed to comply with NBA Media Access Rules moving forward.
The Knicks released this statement:
“The Knicks acknowledge that we did not comply with the NBA’s media policy, and made an error in interpreting Friday’s announcement as an invite only event. As we do throughout the year, we have and will continue to provide access to credentialed media as per the League’s policy.” <
This has been a dumb plan by the Knicks. Even executed as designed, it makes them look bad.
The Knicks should be trying to generate enthusiasm around No. 3 pick R.J. Barrett and double-max cap space (which could turn into Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving). Instead, the Knicks are drawing attention to their thin skin and pettiness. And they’re not stopping the Daily News from writing about the team, anyway.
For Dolan, a $50,000 fine is small. But it’s larger than my confidence his franchise will abide by the league’s media rules – which are designed to ensure fans receive information – going forward.
Kevin Durant‘s torn Achilles in the NBA Finals is the type of life-changing event that could significantly alter his thinking entering free agency.
But we don’t know how Durant was thinking before the injury. And we don’t know how he’s thinking now. He has yet to speak publicly.
That won’t stop rumors, though.
Ric Bucher of Bleacher Report:
the indication from several league sources is that Durant is not happy with the team, and the presumption is that it stems from whatever role Warriors officials played in his decision to suit up. Coach Steve Kerr says he was told Durant could not further injure himself by playing, which obviously proved not to be true. If Durant was told the same, it would give credence to the notion that, as one league executive claims, “He’s really pissed off at the Warriors.”
Jay Williams, who’s close with Durant, said the Warriors misdiagnosed Durant and mishandled public statements about him. Williams doesn’t necessarily speak for Durant, but that might be the best indicator so far of Durant’s mindset.
Do Bucher’s sources have other reason to believe Durant is upset with Golden State? Or are they just assuming Williams is representing Durant’s thoughts? The possibility of the former is what makes this intriguing. But I’m skeptical, especially of someone Bucher identifies as just “one league executive.” That’s light credentials for someone spewing rhetoric like “really pissed off.”
Still, Kendrick Perkins and Brian Windhorst reported on momentum building toward Durant to the Nets. There’s plenty of smoke behind the idea Durant will leave Golden State.
Re-signing with the Warriors might be the way for the injured 30-year-old to maximize his earnings, though. Their max offer projects to be worth $221 million over five years. Other teams’ max offers project to be worth about $164 million over four years. Durant could agree to a delayed sign-and-trade. Of course, he couldn’t actually guarantee Golden State would ever trade him.
So, if he’s that upset with the Warriors, he’ll just leave once free agency opens next week.