“I failed as a leader,” Green said at a news conference Saturday, calling the punch a “huge mistake” while apologizing to the Warriors organization, his teammates and Poole’s family. “I have failed as a man.”
Warriors coach Steve Kerr said Saturday that Green’s departure from the team was a “mutual decision” between the organization and the player, and that “no date has been set” for a return. Green’s status for Golden State’s season opener against the Los Angeles Lakers on Oct. 18, when the defending champions will receive their rings, remains uncertain.
In video footage first released by TMZ without audio, Green walked toward the baseline where Poole was standing until the two were face to face. Poole then pushed Green with both hands, and Green punched Poole with enough force that Poole’s head was thrown back as others rushed towards the pair.
The fight between Green and Poole was first reported on Wednesday, and the Warriors did not immediately discipline Green, instead treating the incident as an internal matter.
Warriors general manager Bob Myers told reporters Thursday that Green has apologized to the team for the confrontation, left the practice facility and will not return until Saturday. Myers initially said he did not expect Green to be suspended or miss any games as a result, and Poole, unscathed by the blow, returned to practice Thursday. That decision came under scrutiny after video of the incident was leaked on Friday.
Green said he was in a “very, very, very bad place mentally” and was “dealing with some stuff in my personal life,” which may have contributed to his brief mood and reaction. Green, who admitted to a history of emotional outbursts, said she was a “flawed person” and “a constant work in progress,” adding that she still had “a long way to go.”
“Hurt people hurt people,” he said. “I hurt someone because I was where I was hurt.”
The 2017 Defensive Player of the Year expressed frustration and embarrassment at the leak of the footage, and thanked the Warriors for conducting an investigation to determine who was responsible. Green said he had watched the video at least 15 times, concluding that his actions “looked worse than I thought” and were “pathetic”.
“I thought [the leak] It was bulls—” Green said. “No other video has leaked from practice. When we work on our sets, they don’t leak. When I’m coaching everybody, it doesn’t leak.
Several Warriors were quick to come to Poole’s defense this week Yahoo reports There was a “change in Poole’s demeanor” during training camp, with the possibility of a lucrative contract extension. Veteran forward Andre Iguodala called him “The Best-Behaved Child” And said Green’s behavior “Family Business.” Warriors star Stephen Curry called the assertion “absolute BS.”
“There’s nothing that warrants the situation,” Curry said Thursday. “I want to make that clear. We don’t think it’s going to derail our season and what we’re trying to build is part of it with Draymond.
Kerr said Poole has been “fantastic throughout camp,” and the coach brushed off concerns about the guard’s attitude.
A four-time All-Star and seven-time All-Defensive Team member, Green has been involved in numerous combat incidents throughout his career. During a 2016 halftime outburst toward Kerr, Green reportedly yelled “I’m not a robot” so loudly that a reporter standing outside the visiting locker room in Oklahoma City could hear him. In 2018, the Warriors suspended Green for one game for an in-game argument with teammate Kevin Durant, a disagreement that preceded Durant’s departure to the Brooklyn Nets in 2019.
Green was suspended by the NBA LeBron gave James a low blow during the 2016 Finals And blatant fouls over the point limit in the playoffs, which he later admitted cost the Warriors the 2016 title. He was there too Eliminated from second round playoff game For a flagrant foul against the Memphis Grizzlies last May.
While under contract through the 2023-24 season, Green was eligible for an extension this offseason, though he said last month that he did not expect to complete the deal before the start of the season.
Poole, 23, enjoyed a breakout campaign in 2021-22, averaging 18.5 points, 3.4 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game in his third season. Considered the early favorite to win Sixth Man of the Year, Poole’s next contract could be similar to the four-year, $130 million extension recently signed by Miami Heat guard Tyler Hero.
Green said he had not met Poole since the incident, but was adamant that parallel contract negotiations were not a motivating factor for his punch.
“I assure you I don’t count other people’s pockets,” he said. “It’s not something I set out to do. The way I was brought up, it abhors another man’s situation.