The Golden State Warriors’ power forward, Draymond Green, is set to serve a five-game suspension following a heated clash with Minnesota Timberwolves’ Rudy Gobert during Tuesday night’s game. Tempers flared as Klay Thompson and Jaden McDaniels engaged in a scuffle, leading Green to intervene by placing Gobert in a headlock.
The altercation unfolded less than two minutes into the game, with Thompson and McDaniels tangling at half-court before physical contact escalated the situation. Green swiftly entered the scene, putting the 7ft 1in Gobert in a headlock before teammates intervened, resulting in the ejection of all four players from the game in San Francisco.
On Wednesday, the NBA officially announced Green’s five-game suspension for his involvement in the altercation.
NBA Executive Vice President, Joe Dumars, stated: ‘Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green has been suspended five games without pay for escalating an on-court altercation and forcibly grabbing Minnesota Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert around the neck in an unsportsmanlike and dangerous manner.’
The length of the suspension takes into account Green’s history of unsportsmanlike acts, as per the league’s statement.
Moreover, fines of $25,000 each were imposed on Gobert, Thompson, and McDaniels for their roles in the incident.
Tuesday’s brawl made history, marking the first time in the last 25 seasons that multiple players were ejected from a game before either team scored a basket. Notably, this is the second time in the last three games that Green has faced ejection, having also been tossed from Saturday’s game against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Responding to the incident, Gobert criticized Green’s actions, describing them as ‘clown behavior.’ He speculated that Green aims to get ejected whenever his teammate, Steph Curry, is absent, emphasizing the need for the league to address such behavior.
Gobert stated, “I’m proud of myself for being the bigger man again and again. He doesn’t even deserve me putting my hands on him.”
This altercation adds to the history of verbal jabs traded between Gobert and Green, recalling a 2019 incident where Green mocked Gobert for expressing disappointment over not making the All-Star game.
Tuesday’s headlock marks Green’s 18th ejection in his 12-season career. Sports statistics from Sportradar reveal that Green has been ejected more frequently, 6.1% of the time, in games without Curry compared to when Curry is on the Golden State lineup (1.6%).
This suspension underscores the NBA’s commitment to maintaining sportsmanship on the court and ensuring players adhere to fair play regulations.