There are times when the trivial worries of the sports world are dragged into a tremendous relief.
A week like the one we just had in Colorado, with one terrible tragedy stacked on top of the other, definitely feels like one of those times.
Nevertheless, the staff of the Week knows that this is a place where readers often go to escape the horrors of the real world. And luckily for us, Golden State Warriors striker Draymond Green gave us a topic that was just divisive and indifferent enough to act as an appropriate distraction.
Draymond Green – D +
In this week’s least shocking development, the Golden States star forward feels cheated.
The offender? It would be none other than the NBA and by extension the Denver Nuggets for not having enough able-bodied players to host its Warriors Thursday night at the Ball Arena.
“How do you continue to cancel games once you have implemented rules to prevent this from happening?” Green tweeted out to his 1.5 million followers Thursday afternoon. “Isn’t that a competitive advantage for other teams? The guys we didn’t have because of the minutes list didn’t matter in Tuesday’s loss? Choose a side, but don’t step over the fence.”
Let us first address Draymond’s easily answerable, possibly rhetorical, questions:
A COVID-19 outbreak discovered by the Nuggets Thursday morning sent coach Michael Malone, two assistant coaches and three players (Jeff Green, Bones Hyland and Zeke Nnaji) into health and safety protocols. On top of that, the Nuggets had eight players on the sidelines due to injuries, including four listed as questionable (three of whom did not play in Tuesday night’s 89-86 victory in San Francisco).
That left seven players available Thursday night – a minor one of the eight required by the NBA. The only way they could have reached that number at such short notice would have been either to force one of their dubious players to dress (and potentially play with an injury), or to write some shit off the street right before tipping.
(Note to Nuggets President Tim Connelly: We’re more than happy to fulfill this role should the need ever arise again.)
Clearly, any sensible person would chalk this up to impossible timing for the Nuggets, who had little or no time to rebuild their roster for a game scheduled just hours later, and bad luck for the Warriors, who themselves were forced to play Denver with only 10 players two nights earlier.
Unfortunately, Draymond does not always make sense, no matter how smart he may be.
This is after all a man who recently said that was it Warriors coach Steve Kerr and team president Bob Myers’ fault that Warriors 2018-19 shattered in the wake of Green’s tantrums on the pitch aimed at Kevin Durant after a loss to the LA Clippers. Because they apparently just had to endure Draymond’s sporadic spaz-outs without tackling them – even though his unrestrained behavior once cost the Warriors a championship (see: 2016 NBA Finals).
That said, we can certainly understand Green’s frustration over Thursday’s events.
His Warriors are locked in a close battle with Phoenix and Utah for the top spot in the Western Conference. Every benefit counts.
But in a world that is changing from hour to hour, it is foolish to expect the NBA to be anything but flexible.