clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

LeBron James’ punch magnet of a groin and the aggressive nature of the first round of this year’s NBA Playoffs

A rash of checked physical play is sweeping the postseason

Memphis Grizzlies v Los Angeles Lakers - Game Three Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Is it just me, or does it seem like a lot of players are being ejected during this first round of playoffs? While asking “Draymond Green got ejected?” may make one sound a bit of a basketball novice, but watching Green, Dillon Brooks, and James Harden, all get sent to the locker room prematurely reveals an NBA reflecting a more volatile mood.

And we’re not just talking an uptick it technical fouls, which always appears to hype up in the playoffs, but the elevation of a foul to a Flagrant Two, resulting in an immediate ejection.

In the case of Draymond Green, he was ejected in Game 2 of the Warriors series against the Sacramento Kings. He stepped on the chest of Dominates Sabonis. Sabonis was also assessed with a tech for holding Green’s leg.

Green’s ejected had added consequences when he was suspended from playing in Game 3. of the series. Justification for the missed game was attributed to his history, which led one journalist to ask why Draymond was suspended for his Flagrant Two and Dillon Brooks was not as Brooks “reputation is anything but clean. He’s widely considered to be a dirty, antagonistic player; basically Draymond Green, only not as good.”

In Game 3 of the Lakers/Grizzlies playoff series, Dillon Brooks started the second half of the game taking a shot to his groin (Draymond Green knows something about that). He also received a Flagrant Two with the accompanied election. But unlike Green, Brooks was back in the next game. You can even hear Doris Burke mention that the decision would be interesting in the wake of Draymond Green’s suspension.

And the third player to get ejected on a Flagrant Two this week was James Harden. (Spoiler alert, he has a history of abusing LeBron’s nether regions as well.)

James elbowed Royce O’Neil in attempt to clear himself some space to move. Unfortunately, his stance was low and he hit O’Neil just below the belt. His foul was elevated to a Flagrant Two and Harden was ejected, but like Dillon Brooks, Harden was not suspended and available to play in the next game.

By the way, what is it about all the sack tapping aimed towards LeBron? In addition to everyone on this list, Lance Stephenson can be added to this list:

As well as one of LeBron’s own teammates:

There was one additional player who received a one-game suspension, but strangely enough didn’t kick his off with Flagrant Two.

After the Game 4 loss putting them in a 3-1 hole, Dejounte Murray nudged an official on his way off the court. According to Murray, they had a history.

“I don’t know why that person treated me the way he treated me over the years, (He’s) a guy I’d like to have a conversation with, Murray stated.

Either way, he was out for Game 5 which the Hawks won in a miraculous fashion.

This feels like to most ejections and game suspensions in quite some time. The players are more amped up and not afraid to take their verbalizations to the very limit. As the first round ends, there’s a chance the players will settle and say what they have to say through their game.

Then again, the stakes get higher with each level.

I guess the questions is - Is the end or the beginning of the most violent postseason in recent history?

Welcome to the Thread. Join in the conversation, start your own discussion, and share your thoughts. This is the Spurs community, your Spurs community. Thanks for being here.

Our community guidelines apply which should remind everyone to be cool, avoid personal attacks, not to troll and to watch the language.