The Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green told The Athletic on Saturday that ongoing friction between the NBA’s officials and players is “ruining the game.”
Green, who picked up his 11th technical foul of the season in the Warriors’ 121-105 victory over the LA Clippers on Saturday, told the website that officials are making things personal and the problem is one of the No. 1 issues that needs to be solved by the league.
“It’s bad,” Green told the website. “It’s horrible. It’s really bad. I don’t know why it is. But I think it’s ridiculous. It’s ruining the game. … It should be one of, if not the main priority, to be solved. It definitely should.”
The fed-up Green even proposed that the NBA should start fresh at the officiating position.
“They can get a new crop [of officials], a whole new crop,” Green told the website. “Too many personal things going on. Too much me against you. It just don’t work that way.”
Green received the technical Saturday when he approached referee Tyler Ford to plead his case that Montrezl Harrell fouled him when the Clippers forward blocked his dunk attempt. Green was ejected during the Warriors’ 141-128 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on Dec. 30, marking the second time he has been tossed this season.
Three of Green’s teammates also have been ejected this season — Kevin Durant, who has been thrown out of games three times, Stephen Curry and Shaun Livingston. Livingston was tossed in an head-butting incident with official Courtney Kirkland. Kirkland was suspended for a week, while Livingston was suspended for one game for the incident.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported last month that Lee Seham, the general counsel for the National Basketball Referees Association, and Michele Roberts, the players association’s executive director, met in New York to discuss the problem.
Seham and Roberts discussed several referee-player issues, including the NBRA’s belief that the league office has become too lenient in allowing players’ aggressive verbiage toward refs. Roberts countered that players are overwhelmingly disconcerted by what they believe is the disrespectful manner with which refs address players on the court.