Another nationally televised game, another Draymond Green scissor kick that catches an opponent in a vulnerable spot.
Once again it played a key role. The Warriors were down three in the second overtime to Houston with just more than two minutes left. Kevin Durant missed a three and Green made a good hustle play to get the offensive board and go back up, where he was fouled by James Harden.
That’s when Green, as he does, flailed his legs up, and his right leg caught Harden in the face. The replay center reviewed the play and called the original common foul on Harden, but a Flagrant 1 on Green for the kick. The result was Green had two free throws, hitting one, then Harden got two free throws (he hit both), then the Rockets got the ball out of bounds which led to another bucket. At the end of it, the Rockets were up six and went on to get the win.
Green said postgame he did not see this coming.
This is where Green’s reputation did him in. I know there is the argument Green was fouled in the air and kicking out his legs is how he keeps from falling, but at that point you’re over thinking it — your foot comes up high enough to hit a guy in the face, you get a flagrant. It’s a red card in soccer for the same reason — it’s dangerous. As a professional athlete, you have to show more body control.
While this play was key, it wasn’t why the Warriors lost. Nor were the officials, sorry Joe Lacob. The problem was the Warriors shot 1-of-11 in the second OT. Stephen Curry/KlayThompson/Kevin Durant shot a combined 10-of-37 from three. Golden State turned the ball over 17 times.
But the Flagrant foul didn’t help.