“Draymond, Ask Your Daddy Who I Was” | Draymond Green’s Loose Tongue Instigates Clapback From ‘80s NBA Enforcers

One of the craziest “debates” on#NBATwitter is which era of basketball had tougher players?

The 1980s and 1990s or today. Following Golden State Warriors’ All-Defensive dynamo Draymond Green’s performance in Game 2 of the NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics, a lot was made of Green’s antics during a physical game. Celtics’ legend and team broadcaster Cedric Maxwell said in his day (1980s) guys would meet Green’s antics with physicality. Green heard Maxwell’s comments and went on a lengthy diatribe.

“One thing that baffles me about the ’80s or the ’90s, or whenever you want to call it when basketball was so much more physical, is some of the guys that be talking weren’t the guys that were punching people. They act like guys was just walking around the court, like, I’m hitting this guy in the nose,” Green said.
“There were a few guys back then that would lay you out, that would knock you out, that would foul you and get thrown out the game. Bill Laimbeer. Rick Mahorn. But everybody running around acting like they were that. Y’all were getting bullied.”

Of course Maxwell had to respond, lest anyone think Green was questioning his “manhood” and he didn’t clap back.

“You keep saying nobody was punching anybody,” Maxwell said. “You ask Charles Barkley what happened when he and I got into a fight…Draymond wasn’t even born when I was playing…Draymond ask your daddy who I was, that’s how that goes.”

On the one hand this is hilarious. On the other, what are we talking about? Grown men fighting over a game? Scratch that. It’s all hilarious.

Sports are competitive everyone understands that. Especially at the highest levels when championships and riches are on the line. Guys will do whatever they can to gain a competitive advantage. Green does that as well as anybody, skirting up to and over that line at times.

But the idea that because you’re losing a basketball game or any other athletic competition and your recourse is to resort to violence is weak. Now, that doesn’t mean you let someone push you around. But if the officials are letting it go, then you meet that with physicality if that’s how you get down. If not, then you respond however you choose to. The main thing is to not let a player like Green get you out of character and hurt your team in the process.

Maxwell’s teammate on those 1980s Celtics, Robert Parish, also had some words about Green.

“Draymond is an instigator. That’s right. He goes out of his way to provoke people,” Parish said. “That’s why he would’ve gotten punched. Because he’s an antagonist. He’s a fingernail away from letting his teammates down. In my opinion, he shows up the officials, and you cannot do that. They had to warn him. He was trying to start trouble with different Celtics players, trying to get them to do something out of character. Trying to provoke them to do something detrimental to their team. He kind of reminds me of Dennis Rodman a little bit, how he provokes: keep poking the dog, poking the dog. But sooner or later, the dog is going to bite you.”

Maybe Parish and Maxwell are right, in the 1980s Green might have gotten punched. Players like Laimbeer, Mahorn, Rodman, Charles Oakley, Xavier McDaniel, Kermit Washington, etc. would likely throw haymakers at a player like Green.

But the rules were different then. A punch wasn’t an automatic ejection and suspension like it is now. Not to mention the heavy fine that would get levied on you in today’s game.

That’s the main reason guys don’t throw punches today. The penalties are too severe, especially in the Finals. There is no doubt if Green did this during the summer in pick-up, he’d get clocked by someone. But this isn’t the blacktop or the 80s where fighting was allowed.

It’s 2022 and it’s the NBA Finals. Nobody wants to cost their team a title over nonsense.

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