I'm disappointed that all of the sports reporters and talking heads, except for Charles Barkley (Go Charles!) have not come to the defense of Draymond Green. They have not even bothered to look carefully at LeBron's actions prior to the "so-called punch" that caused Draymond the suspension. Did they not see LeBron, using his left arm, throw Draymond to the floor? Did they not see LeBron, then, do a step-over-crotch-in-face-disrespectful move over and on top of Draymond's head, brushing Dray's head with his knee? Didn't see that? Really? Have you no eyes to see? Shakespeare is appropriate here.
Draymond swung at that insult, an insult that LeBron clearly knew was an insult. He's lying if he says he doesn't know. It's an insult that, had it happened on a playground, would have resulted in a fight. LeBron knew Draymond would react. The League, unfortunately, didn't.
By refusing to acknowledge that LeBron had provoked Draymond.and by not assessing LeBron a Flagrant 1 for taunting, the NBA demonstrated its lack of understanding of the sport it's supposed to govern.
Basketball has a culture. It is the quintessential American sport. It may have been born in a YMCA gym, but it was raised and nurtured on inner-city playgrounds. The League may think it's taking the High Road by suspending Draymond, but in my opinion, all it's doing is showing how far it has removed itself from the game's origins.
If it had been me instead of Draymond, I would have been off the floor and punching King James right in his pretentious jaw. Instead of being critical of LeBron, most of the criticism has been against Draymond. That's too damn bad. I thought Draymond showed amazing restraint.
If this is a make-up call for the Draymond's OKC step-back-jumper-kick that struck Adams in the groin, then I guess it is what it is. Make-up calls have unfortunately been a part of the NBA for as long as I've been a part of the sport. We've all had to live with them, and Draymond will have to live with it too. It's a shame.
A short poem in closing from my collection, Sweat: New and Selected Poems About Sports. Given the subject of this blog, I believe it resonates.
WHY I NEVER PLAYED GOLF
I didn't trust myself. Imagine
losing a match by one stroke
on the eighteenth green, his putt
longer than mine. He sinks it
for a birdie and I sink mine
for par, and I have my putter
in my hand and a bad temper
and he is smiling at me.
You understand, smiling.
What my musings are all about...
Blogging might well be the 21st century's form of journaling. As a writing teacher, I have always advised my students to keep a daily journal as a way of organizing their thoughts for future writing projects, a discipline I have unfortunately never consistently practiced myself. By blogging, I might finally be able to follow my own good advice.
The difference between journaling and blogging is that the blogger opens his or her writing to the public, something journal- writers are usually reluctant to do. I am not so reticent.
The trick for me will be to avoid cluttering the internet with more blather, something none of us need more of. If I stick to subjects I know: sports and literature, I believe I can avoid that pitfall. I can't promise that I'll not stray from time to time to comment on ancillary subjects, but I will make every attempt to be interesting and perhaps even insightful.