Basketball Star Avoids Suspension After Punching Teammate. Does The NBA Need Stricter Misconduct Regulations?

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Seth Roy Contributor
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Draymond Green of the Golden State Warriors has avoided suspension after punching his teammate in the face earlier this month.

Warriors’ head coach Steve Kerr announced Wednesday that Green was given a fine for striking teammate Jordan Poole but would not be suspended over it, according to CBS Sports. Kerr said that Green will re-join the Warriors as a full participant beginning Thursday after he took a few days off to regroup following the incident.

It’s quite stunning that Kerr and the Warriors organization are letting Green off the hook so easily after he flattened his teammate the way that he did. In any other work environment, clocking one of your coworkers would result in immediate termination or even in an arrest.

It’s hard to believe the fine Green received will impact him at all financially, considering how he’s played in the NBA for almost a decade now. The Warriors barely punishing Green for his assault on Poole sends a poor message throughout the league and to the fans. The organization signaled to the world that if you’re athletically gifted enough, you can do anything you want and get away with it, no matter how egregious the action. (RELATED: Former Chicago Bulls Star Ben Gordon Arrested For Allegedly Hitting His 10-Year-Old-Son)

The Golden State Warriors completely dropped the ball in handling this. It’s also surprising as similar cases of misconduct have seen harsher punishments in the past. In 2017, Bobby Portis, who at the time was a member of the Chicago Bulls, was suspended for eight games after he punched his teammate, Nikola Mirotic, in the face during a training camp practice. The punch left Mirotic with facial fractures and a concussion, according to ESPN. For Green to not face any kind of suspension whatsoever is a step in the wrong direction for the league after how the Portis and Mirotic situation was handled five years ago.

It’s appalling that the NBA didn’t intervene with Green’s punishment and make it more severe. The four-time NBA champion got away with a slap on the wrist.