Draymond Green calls Jusuf Nurkic, Kevin Durant 'cowardly' following contentious Warriors win over Suns



Stephen Curry made an incredible game-winner on Saturday as the Golden State Warriors defeated the Phoenix Suns, but as usual when these teams meet up, the story was the feud between Draymond Green and Jusuf Nurkic. The last time they met, a flagrant foul Green committed against Nurkic led to an indefinite suspension that ultimately lasted 16 games. Saturday’s matchup was only marginally less eventful.

Both committed hard fouls on the other. Both made “too small” taunts after scoring on their counterpart. Green even picked up his first technical foul since his suspension after arguing a no-call on a layup, and as he made his way back down the court, he gave Nurkic a bump. After the game, Nurkic took a shot at Green and made it clear he expects the four-time NBA champion to get himself into more trouble.

“I mean it’s sad. He didn’t learn anything,” Nurkic said on Saturday. “Just matter of time, he’s gonna knock somebody else again. I take everything back, what I said. He don’t deserve a chance. … His antics. Try to hit people. Just stuff he shouldn’t do.”

Green, never one to allow a rival to get the last word, fired back on The Draymond Green Show on Tuesday. Naturally, he had quite a bit to say. “Following the game, the little guy goes in the media and he says, ‘I take my words back,” Green said. “Frankly, I’d like to know why it’s only a matter of time before I hit someone else, because I destroyed him.”

Green not only picked up the victory in the game, but added 15 points, nine assists and seven rebounds to the effort. Nurkic, who did not close the game as the Suns often go small for the final minutes, posted just six points, six rebounds and four assists. In Green’s mind, Nurkic went back to the suspension because of how poorly he played in the game. “What happened in the game that would make you say that, other than you getting embarrassed because you’re just not good enough?” Green went on. “He starts to question my character. What a coward.”

But Nurkic wasn’t the only Sun in Green’s crosshairs. He also took aim at former teammate Kevin Durant, who told the media that he hoped Green would “get the help he needs” after the initial incident with Nurkic that led to his suspension.

“Guys are making a habit out of that. Him and Kevin questioning my character before, as if you’re going to question somebody’s character by the basketball game as if it’s not real life,” Green continued. “As if that don’t affect people’s pockets. Like, I think all of it was really cowardly if you want my honest opinion.”

Nurkic took to Twitter to respond to Green’s podcast, saying “All good bad boy just don’t stay to long on podcast, gonna be late for therapy session.” Green quoted the tweet and called Nurkic “the 300 pound softy that can’t finish games.”

While Green thankfully did nothing on Saturday to risk another suspension, the Warriors would likely prefer him to avoid these sort of confrontations moving forward. Rivalries like this can escalate quickly on the court. The wrong hard foul or shove risks putting Green in a compromising position. The league has cited his past history when issuing discipline in the past, and lengthy podcasts criticizing players you’ve committed suspension-worthy fouls against doesn’t exactly scream self-improvement.





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