Coach Steve Kerr announced that Draymond Green has been fined but not suspended for controversially punching Jordan Poole in the face during a preseason practice last week. Kerr didn’t disclose the amount of the fine to reporters.
Kerr made the announcement after the Dubs’ preseason game against the Trail Blazers on Monday. He distinctly called the contentious moment “the biggest crisis that we’ve ever had.” Kerr also said Green would return to the team on Thursday and expects Green to play Golden State’s last preseason game and their opening night contest against the Lakers.
“It’s been an exhaustive process,” Kerr said per Yahoo Sports. “We feel like this is the best way after assessing everything for us to move forward. It’s never easy, no matter what decision you make in a situation like this. It’s not going to be perfect.”
Kerr said that key figures in the organization, including Green, Poole, Stephen Curry, and GM Bob Myers, were involved in the decision-making process leading up to Kerr’s announcement. Kerr added that he trusts Green and that the former Michigan State Spartan has earned the benefit of the doubt following Green’s lapse in judgment.
“I trust him,” Kerr added. “He broke our trust with this incident. But I’m giving him the benefit of the doubt because I think he’s earned that. I think our team feels the same way.”
Kerr added Green and Poole had played a role in deciding Green’s punishment and that the two veterans have “had a great discussion” that he believes will help them “move forward” from the incident.
Poole has yet to address what happened, but Kerr said that the franchise would make the former Michigan Wolverine available to reporters soon.
According to Vincent Goodwill of Yahoo Sports, the tension between Green and Poole had been simmering since the start of the training camp. Although both players are eligible for contract extensions, Green flat-out denied that the dispute was over money. Green also said that he was “wrong for my actions that took place” last week and that he’s apologized not just to Poole and his teammates but to Poole’s family for “the embarrassment” he caused to the team. He also declared that: “I failed as a leader. I failed as a man.”
“I was wrong for my actions that took place on Wednesday,” Green said. “For that, I have apologized to my team. I have apologized to Jordan.”
The Warriors open their regular season at home on Oct. 18 against the Los Angeles Lakers, where they’ll celebrate their 2022 NBA championship with a ring ceremony.