Monday, November 28

Draymond Green Apologizes After Punching Golden State Warriors Teammate Jordan Poole During Practice


Draymond Green #23 of the Golden State Warriors reacts to a play in the third quarter against Derrick White #9

Draymond Green #23 of the Golden State Warriors reacts to a play in the third quarter against Derrick White #9

Maddie Meyer/Getty Images Draymond Green in the 2022 NBA Finals

Golden State Warriors veteran Draymond Green has apologized to teammates and coaching staff after he punched teammate Jordan Poole in the face on Wednesday, according to the organization.

Warriors general manager Bob Myers addressed the incident after Thursday’s practice. “Draymond apologized to the team this morning,” said Myers. “Jordan was there in the room, I was there in the room with the team, the coaches, the players and we heard that.”

Initial reports of 32-year-old Green’s altercation began to surface on Wednesday evening. “It’s the NBA. It’s professional sports. These things happen. Nobody likes it. We don’t condone it, but it happened,” Myers said.

On Thursday, TMZ obtained video of the altercation. Footage from the practice shows Green and Poole, 23, sizing each other up before the veteran struck his young teammate in the face, knocking him to the ground.

The Warriors Draymond Green (23) hears it from the fans after he committed a fourth quarter foul. The Boston Celtics hosted the Golden State Warriors for Game Three of the NBA Finals

The Warriors Draymond Green (23) hears it from the fans after he committed a fourth quarter foul. The Boston Celtics hosted the Golden State Warriors for Game Three of the NBA Finals

Jim Davis/The Boston Globe via Getty Images Draymond Green plays in the 2022 NBA Finals

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Jordan Poole has not commented on the incident. A representative for Green did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

Myers told reporters that any disciplinary action Green will face will come from the organization and that they plan to handle it internally. “As far as any suspension, punishment, fine, we’re going to handle that internally.”

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Myers also shared parts of his conversation with Green after the incident. “Draymond is one of my favorite players,” Myers said. “I told him that, but I just said, ‘You’re better than this. Don’t do this. Don’t do this to yourself. Don’t put yourself in this position.’ Still love the person. Don’t love what he did, but still love the guy.”

Warriors head coach Steve Kerr commented on Green’s behavior during media availability as well, telling media: “Green didn’t practice today, won’t be here tomorrow. I expect him to return on Saturday and get back at it,” Kerr said.

Kerr echoed Myers’ decision to navigate the incident within the organization. “As a coach, anytime there’s something that happens, we try to handle things internally.”

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Speculation over what caused Green’s outburst began almost immediately on social media after the news broke. One rumor that teammate Andre Iguodala quickly shut down was that the tension between Green and Poole stemmed from their contract extensions.

“What we not gone do is talk crazy about my young fella JP,” the Golden State veteran wrote. Iguodala told his Twitter followers that Poole is a “great character kid” and that anything claiming to be “straight from the source” is likely fabricated.

Warriors star, and close friend of Green’s, Stephen Curry was also asked about the altercation after Thursday’s practice. Curry, 34, shot down rumors that Poole may have been to blame for his teammates fighting.

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“The specific tweet put out yesterday about insinuating that JP’s attitude or something has changed since he’s been in this training camp or even whatever time they’re talking about. It’s absolute B.S.,” said Curry.

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Kerr agreed that Poole has been a valuable addition to the team’s roster so far. “Jordan has been fantastic throughout camp,” Kerr said.

“There was a report that I was made aware of last night that someone put out there that Jordan had an attitude at camp — nothing could be further from the truth. He’s been fantastic. So, disappointing to see misinformation out there, but I wanted to make sure I set the record straight on that.”

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