Draymond Green returned to Warriors practice for the first time since his altercation with Jordan Poole on Thursday.
Green stayed home for the last week to help cool down and mitigate the wounds caused by his controversial squabble with Poole. Since then, Coach Steve Kerr announced that the Warriors fined Green and decided not to suspend the four-time champion. Kerr put an exclamation point on the incident by calling it “the biggest crisis that we’ve ever had.”
“We had the conversations about what we need to do moving forward, and we’re going to do that,” Green said per ESPN. “We are not going to continue to hold on to the past.”
— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) October 13, 2022
Before Green came back, the Dubs had meetings with the front office, coaching staff, and prominent players like Poole, Looney, Stephen Curry, and Andre Iguodala. Once players, specifically Poole, gave the thumbs up, the Warriors decided it was time to bring Green back.
Green is set to play in Golden States’ final preseason game against the Denver Nuggets on Friday. He will also be available when the Warriors have presented their rings ahead of their opening night contest against the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday.
GAME DAY pic.twitter.com/Mi74ILE99s
— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) October 14, 2022
Green didn’t tell reporters what he was up to during his self-imposed break from the team, but he did say he was in a better mental state on Thursday than when he left. According to Green, Kerr, and Kevon Looney, Thursday’s practice was business as usual, and there was no on-court awkwardness between anyone.
Despite the public backing from Kerr and his teammates, Green admitted there would be lingering feelings about his quarrel with Poole. Kerr touched on the moment on Wednesday when he said that the Warriors’ “culture had been damaged by the incident. You have to work to repair that.” Kerr added that Green broke the team’s trust but also said that Green deserves the benefit of the doubt due to the relationship they’ve built since 2015.
“It’s about making sure our team camaraderie is right,” Green said. “You can tell when you’re playing against a team, and they have good camaraderie — if not, they can be broken easy — if you have that, you can build through anything. [Our camaraderie doesn’t] get very shaken.”
Although Green acknowledged that he had some work to do when he stepped away from the team, Green seemingly had some contention with the notion that he had to rebuild trust with his teammates. The Warriors have been victorious because of the trust the Warriors’ “foundational six” has built over the last eight seasons. Not to mention their desire to win and knowing what it takes to win.
Green will use that mindset to navigate his relationship with Poole for the foreseeable future.
“Jordan is a professional, and I am a professional. We have a job to do — we’re going to do just that,” Green said. “[As far as a personal relationship], I’m not sure. That’s not up to me, nor do I think there is much relevance. We’re paid to do a job, and we are going to do that job to the best of our abilities.”