Pliability

Draymond Green’s excuse for stomping on Domantas Sabonis makes him sound like a frail old lady

The NBA Playoffs are underway and Draymond Green has been ejected. He now faces possible suspension. Stop us if you’ve heard this one before. On Monday night, late in Game 2 of the Golden State Warriors’ first-round matchup against the Sacramento Kings, Kings’ star Domantas Sabonis went down in the paint while battling for a rebound. His fall took him into Green’s legs and Sabonis appeared to grab Green’s foot in order to stop him from getting up court on the fastbreak. So far so good for Green, but as we all know, that never lasts.

Sabonis was given a technical for grabbing Green’s foot (not to mention the initial flop that kicked off the sh*t storm) and Green was give a flagrant 2 and ejected for using Sabonis' chest as a trampoline. In both cases the punishment seemed to fit the crime, but after the game Green was incensed, alleging no wrongdoing on the basis of the flimsiest excuse this side of “the dog ate my homework.”

“I’m not the most flexible person,” Green says. “So it’s not stretching that far [gestures out in front of him with his arm]...I can only step so far.”

Draymond, bro. You’re a professional athlete. If you can dunk, you can absolutely step over a human body in front of you. If you can’t, then maybe you gotta try this new-fangled thing called yoga. All the kids are doing it.

But OK, let’s take Green’s premise at face value. Even if he literally can’t step over Sabonis, whether because of pliability issues or because Sabonis is holding his foot, that is not how he would put his foot down for balance. We all know a stomp when we see one, and that is definitely a stomp. Plus, look at that little Willy Wonka heel click after he springs off of Sabonis' chest. Are we really supposed to believe that this man, now bounding up court like a lemur, was physically incapable of stepping 24 inches forward or 18 inches back? Come on.

That’s not to say Green’s actions aren’t understandable or even justified on some level. Sabonis’ play is dirty and potentially dangerous. Malik Monk grabbed Green’s legs during Game 1. He was fed up. We get it. But Green has been in this league 11 years. He knows it’s the retaliator that always gets punished, especially if that retaliator’s name is “Draymond Green.” He can also come up with a much better excuse than that. Lord knows he’s had plenty of practice.