NBA Reviewing Warriors/Timberwolves Altercation

The NBA, as expected, is taking a closer look at Tuesday’s on-court scuffle between the Warriors and the Timberwolves, weighing whether additional punishment – in the form of fines and/or suspensions – will be necessary, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter link).

As we detailed earlier today, the confrontation began when Klay Thompson and Jaden McDaniels got tied up battling for rebounding positioning early in the first quarter. They continued to grab and shove each other on the way back up the court, prompting referees to stop play and Wolves center Rudy Gobert to try to intervene.

Warriors forward Draymond Green rushed in and put Gobert in a headlock before players were separated (Twitter video link via Bleacher Report). McDaniels and Thompson were each given two technical fouls and ejected from the game, while Green was also thrown out after being assessed with a flagrant 2 foul.

Green’s headlock on Gobert figures to be a focus of the NBA’s review, according to Wojnarowski, who notes (via Twitter) that Green’s reputation as a “repeat offender” was cited by the league in the spring when he was suspended for stepping on Domantas Sabonis in Golden State’s first-round playoff series vs. Sacramento.

The Warriors’ next game is on Thursday vs. Oklahoma City, so the NBA figures to make a ruling by then, if not before the Wolves’ contest in Phoenix on Wednesday.

Head coach Steve Kerr defended Green after Tuesday’s game, telling reporters that the Warriors star went after Gobert because the Minnesota center “had his hands on Klay’s neck.” Gobert chuckled when informed of Kerr’s comments, according to Jon Krawczynski and Sam Amick of The Athletic.

“What do you want me to say? He’s backing his guy, but I think he knows,” Gobert said. “Deep inside, he (doesn’t) want to say it but his guy is a clown.”

Krawczynski and Amick suggest that Green held onto Gobert for about nine seconds. Gobert, who held up his arms during that time to show the officials he wasn’t retaliating, believes the outcome could’ve been worse than it was.

“He’s grabbing me, he’s grabbing me, he’s grabbing me,” Gobert said. “(But) the choke wasn’t good enough. Yeah, it wasn’t enough for me to really have to (go to sleep). But he tried. He tried really hard, but it wasn’t good enough to where I felt like I was really in danger of falling asleep or something like that.

“… It was a long time, and if he knew how to choke it could have been way worse. He tried to. His intention was to really take me out. And I kept my hands up the whole time just to show the officials that I wasn’t trying to escalate the situation.”

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