Andre Drummond was forced to watch the Cleveland Cavaliers' blowout loss to the Warriors on Monday night from the bench, but he heard Draymond Green's comments on the hypocrisy of how the NBA teams treat players and clearly appreciated the sentiment.
Drummond was inactive for the loss as the Cavaliers won't play him right now as they look to trade the two-time All-Star center after acquiring the younger Jarrett Allen. Unprompted, Green called out the Cavs' decision after Golden State's win and ripped the way NBA players are mistreated.
“To watch (Cavaliers center) Andre Drummond before the game sit on the sideline and go to the back and come out in street clothes, because a team is going to trade him, is bull---t,” Green said.
“Because when James Harden asked for a trade and essentially dogged it -- I don't think there was no surprise; no one is going to fight the fact that James was dogging it his last days in Houston -- but he was castrated for wanting to go to a different team. Everybody destroyed that man.
“And yet a team can come out and say, ‘We want to trade a guy,’ and then that guy is to go sit. And if he doesn't stay professional, then he's a cancer. And he's not good in someone's locker room. And he's the issue."
And he didn't stop there.
"We've seen situations ... Harrison Barnes getting pulled off the bench, or DeMarcus Cousins finding out that he's traded in an interview after the All-Star Game. And we continue to let this happen.
“But I got fined for stating my opinion and what I thought should happen with another player. But teams can come out and continue to say, ‘Oh we're trading guys. We're not playing you.’ And yet we're to stay professional.
“At some point, as players, we need to be treated with the same respect and have the same rights that the team can have. Because as a player, you’re the worst person in the world when you want a different situation. But a team can say they're trading you and that man is to stay in shape. He is to stay professional. And if not, his career is on the line.
“At some point, this league has to protect the players from embarrassment like that.” Green’s message is clear. It’s distinct. There is considerable validity to it.
“We talk all this stuff about ‘You can't do this. You can't say that publicly. If you say that publicly ... Anthony Davis got fined, I think $100,000 (actually $50,000) for demanding a trade publicly,” Green says. “But you can say Andre Drummond's getting traded publicly, and we're looking to trade him publicly. And he's to stay professional? And just deal with it?
“But then when Kyrie Irving says, ‘My mental health is off,’ everybody goes crazy about that, too. Do you not think that affects someone mentally? As much as we put into this game, to be great? To come out here and be in shape, to produce for fans every single night and, most importantly, to help your team win? Do you think that doesn't affect someone mentally?
“But as players, we’re told, ‘You can't say that? You can't say this? But teams can? It goes along the same lines of when everyone wants to say, ‘Oh, man, that young guy can't figure it out.’ But no one wants to say the organization can't figure it out.
“At some point to players must be respected in these situations. And it’s ridiculous and I’m sick of seeing it. Y’all have a great night and I’ll see y’all tomorrow or Wednesday.”
Green spoke for over three minutes on the topic before thanking reporters and walking off the podium. Drummond wasn't the only NBA player to appreciate Green's comments, but the league surely wasn't as big of fans.