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Draymond Green will not be suspended for Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals after kicking Steven Adams of the Oklahoma City Thunder in the groin, the NBA has announced. Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical was the first to report.
Sam Amick of USA Today adds that the Golden State Warriors’ Green has also been fined $25,000, and that the original Flagrant-1 call has been upgraded to a Flagrant 2. The changing of the ruling is not insignificant, as another Flagrant-1 foul would mean an automatic one-game suspension for Green and another Flagrant-2 foul would mean an automatic two-game suspension.
In other words, the NBA has chosen not to suspend Green, but by changing the ruling it is sending him a stern warning to not have any more incidents in the playoffs.
Kiki Vandeweghe, the NBA’s executive vice president of basketball operations, released a statement explaining the ruling:
After a thorough investigation that included review of all available video angles and interviews with the players involved and the officials working the game, we have determined that Green’s foul was unnecessary and excessive and warranted the upgrade and fine. During the game, players – at times – flail their legs in an attempt to draw a foul. But Green’s actions in this case warranted an additional penalty.
The incident came in the second quarter of Game 3, as Green drove to the basket and was fouled by Stevens. After losing the ball on the way up to take a shot, Green kicked his leg forward and Adams fell to the ground in pain. It was the second time in this series that Green had kicked Adams in the groin.