Warriors

Draymond Green won't allow himself to get suspended for technical fouls

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Draymond Green won't allow himself to get suspended for technical fouls

Aside from a serious injury to a star, the list of items that make the Warriors nervous down the stretch is relatively short and probably topped by the threat of Draymond Green being suspended for a game that could decide the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference.

Chill. It’s not going to happen, no matter your source of information.

When Green was hit with a technical foul Wednesday in Memphis, some outlets reported it as his 15th of the season, leaving him one away from triggering a one-game suspension.

That was, however, Green’s 14th technical of the season. It’s the 16th that results in automatic suspension. Green was informed that this was, in fact, No. 14.

“How many games we got left? Eight?” Green asked reporters after a 118-103 win over the Grizzlies. “We got eight games left?

“I got one to play with.”

Green claimed not to know how many technical fouls he had been assessed. Maybe he didn’t. More likely, given his general awareness of team basketball, he knew.

He certainly knows now.

Which is why Green won’t allow himself to miss a game that matters. He’s been there and the memories still haunt him. Draymond was suspended for Game 5 of the 2016 NBA Finals and that opened the door for the Warriors to make some unwanted history.

With Green next door watching an A’s baseball game from a suite at the Coliseum, the Cavaliers won Game 5 at Oracle Arena, and then Game 6 in Cleveland and, finally, Game 7 back at Oracle. The Warriors became the first team to blow a 3-1 series lead in The Finals.

Green felt the brunt of that. There is little question that his presence, along with his teammates, would have been enough to win the series, maybe in five games.

With the Warriors locked in a fierce battle with the Nuggets for the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference, there are stakes to upcoming games -- particularly the game against Denver at Oracle on April 2.

Green will not allow a suspension of himself to be a reason why the Warriors lose out on something they want.

[RELATED: How Draymond's defense set the tone in Warriors' win]

“Last year, he went to 15 and stopped,” coach Steve Kerr said. “He knows. He knows what he’s doing.”

That’s exactly what unfolded last season, even though the Warriors conceded the No. 1 seed to Houston with nearly a month remaining in the regular season. Green was assessed with his 15th technical last season on Feb. 24. It was rescinded two days later.

Two technical fouls away from suspension, Green picked up another on March 9 against the Trail Blazers in Portland. That was No. 15.

Green played the final 16 games without being assessed with a technical foul.

He wouldn’t let it happen then, and he’s not going to let it happen now.

Nets GM Sean Marks denies wild Gregg Popovich 'Godfather offer' rumor

Nets GM Sean Marks denies wild Gregg Popovich 'Godfather offer' rumor

Could Kevin Durant and Gregg Popovich team up in Brooklyn?

As unlikely as the scenario is, there is a rumor floating around the NBA Twitterverse that the Nets are preparing to try to lure the legendary coach away from the San Antonio Spurs.

Stick with me here.

During a recent episode of the "Let's Get Technical" podcast, former NBA player Gerald Brown joined hosts Rasheed Wallace and Bonzi Wells, and guest Amin Elhassan. Brown said this:

"There's a story going around that the owner of the Brooklyn Nets is looking to make a 'Godfather offer' to Gregg Popovich, and when I say the 'Godfather [offer], it's something he can't refuse," Brown said. "Hearing this news, and it's probably going to circulate more in the days to come, I'm not really buying it at all."

Brown didn't cite a source on this rumor. But back in March, ESPN's Stephen A. Smith did mention Popovich's name as one of three candidates for the Nets' job (H/T The Spun), along with former Cleveland Cavaliers coach Ty Lue and former Warriors coach Mark Jackson.

The Pop-to-Nets rumor had enough legs to make it all the way back to Brooklyn GM Sean Marks, who was asked during an interview on WFAN radio in New York about the idea of pursuing the longtime Spurs coach.

"Pop has a job," Marks told Joe Benigno and Evan Roberts on Friday. "So I will say that. And, obviously, we all know he’s an amazing, amazing coach, and to be quite frank, an even better leader. So I’ll let Pop continue to coach for the Spurs, and He owes it to them and they owe it to him. I’m sure he’s quite happy there."

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

But would it make sense for the Warriors nemesis to leave San Antonio for Brooklyn?

The Nets need a permanent coach for the 2020-21 season. Brooklyn fired Kenny Atkinson in March, and interim coach Jacque Vaughn will guide the bare bones team through the NBA restart in Orlando, but he might not be the answer in the long run.

Durant and fellow NBA superstar Kyrie Irving are going to want a coach with experience and a proven plan. While Lue won an NBA title with the Cavs, and Jackson laid the foundation for the Warriors, they aren't the sexy picks.

Why would Popovich leave San Antonio, where he's coached for 24 seasons? The Spurs have been considered the gold standard for NBA teams for the last two decades, but they've fallen on hard times. Their streak of 22 straight NBA playoff appearances likely will come to an end this season, and they don't have a bonafide superstar to build around for the next few seasons.

So maybe it's time for Pop to chase a new challenge. Of course, he's 71 years old and has been coaching in the league since 1988, so maybe his next move is to hang up the clipboard.

But if Popovich wants one more chance to win a ring, bolting for Brooklyn might not be the worst idea, especially if the Nets are willing to make a "Godfather Offer" to him.

[RELATED: Durant all smiles on Dubs anniversary]

There would also be the strange twist of Durant teaming up with Warriors coach Steve Kerr's mentor.

If Pop really did make the move, the Warriors wouldn't have to deal with him in the Western Conference, but if they return to NBA title contention, they might be looking at Popovich, Durant and Irving across from them in the NBA Finals.

Now that's a juicy storyline. NBA Twitter might explode if that happened next summer.

Heat guard Tyler Herro studies Warriors' Klay Thompson to improve shot

Heat guard Tyler Herro studies Warriors' Klay Thompson to improve shot

Klay Thompson's shot is that of near perfection. Steph Curry might be regarded as the greatest shooter in NBA history, but his fellow Splash Brother's form is picturesque. 

Miami Heat rookie Tyler Herro is taking note, too. The shooting guard has taken advantage of his time away from the court before the NBA's restart by watching film on Thompson and other greats.

"Klay Thompson, Ray Allen, CJ McCollum, Steve Nash and Bradley Beal are the guys that’s I’ve watched, just picking different things from each player," Herro recently told reporters, via the South Florida Sun Sentinel's Ira Winderman. 

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Herro, 20, is averaging 12.9 points per game for the Heat while shooting an impressive 39.1 percent from 3-point range. As a rookie, Thompson shot 41.4 percent from deep and has a career 41.9 shooting percentage from beyond the arc. They don't make many like Klay. 

Miami's young sharpshooter is studying one specific part of Thompson's game, too.

"You know, Klay and Ray, they do the catch-and-shoot very well," Herro said. "So that's the thing that I pay attention to when I'm watching them. But every player that I watch, or the coaches have me watch, I can dissect something new or something different from their game to try to add it to mine."

[RELATED: Steph has funny prediction for Warriors-Cavs bubble rematch]

Herro and the Heat resume their season Aug. 1 against the Denver Nuggets in Orlando. In just his first season, he has helped the Heat become a contender as a feared outside shooter and will play a big role once the NBA returns. 

Rested, healthy and full of more knowledge from hours watching film, we'll soon be able to see what exactly Herro picked up from Thompson other great shooters.