Draymond Green is not one to bite his tongue. Not usually, anyway. So when he took to the podium after the Golden State Warriors won an NBA title with a 129-120 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers Monday night, there were high expectations for some golden postgame quotations.
In the end, Green delivered … just not in the way many expected him to.
That’s because Green also loves the game of basketball, and recognizes and respects those who play it at a high level. In typical Draymond fashion, he explained how he was all prepared to rant about the Cavs, and specifically their most prominent trash talkers. But he reconsidered that approach, and instead gave us this:
— Def Pen Hoops (@DefPenHoops) June 13, 2017
“I did this State of the Union address,” he said. “I wrote down this stuff, like, ‘Man, I’m gonna say this, I’m gonna say that.’ I was gonna bash everybody who talked junk. I felt like [Richard Jefferson] was talking junk the whole series in the media, J.R. said some things. I’m like, I’m gonna bash everybody. And then … like … Nah, that’s a championship team.”
Later, Green referenced the prepared statement again:
“I’m telling you, I had this whole document ready,” he said. “I was ready to bash everybody. But I just — I have too much respect for them.”
The first mention of the address was in a question that referenced the Warriors winning despite the refs. Green also made a point to push back on that criticism of the zebras. He said the reason for what some saw as questionable calls in Game 4 was simply the Cavaliers’ aggression. “Usually when you’re aggressive, the calls go your way,” he explained.
The second mention of the “document” was a part of Green’s response to a question about him helping Cleveland players up off the floor and refraining from arguments with the referees. That response also included a great bit about how and why Green realized he needed to scale back his reactions:
“I talked to my dad, my grandmother, every person I saw walking down the street, my mom, everybody’s like, ‘Keep your cool, keep your cool. Don’t argue with the refs.’ I had to ask myself, Is it that bad? Like, does it look that bad that everyone I see — I’m in a grocery store, guy’s like, ‘Keep your cool.’ I’m like, Jesus Christ, this must be bad.
“And so I had to have a real seminar with myself, like I must be out there looking bad. So, I just told myself, like I’m not going to worry about the officials. I’m just going to play the game.”
More NBA Finals coverage from Yahoo Sports:
• Kevin Durant wins NBA Finals MVP award after winning first title
• Stephen Curry smokes championship cigar live on TV
• NBA Finals winners/losers: Steve Kerr is a champion again
• Even ‘Jeopardy’ is taking shots at Kevin Durant for joining the Warriors