First up, I don’t mean to downgrade the drama here, but this isn’t a fight. Anyone that’s watched the NBA through the ‘80s, ‘90s or 2000s knows that players used to exchange fisticuffs. This isn’t even wrist-icuffs. This is just a lot of yelling and brushing up against one another like you’re in a crowded subway car.
During Monday’s Warriors–Thunder clash, it’s notable that after OKC youngster Semaj Christon started applying pressure to Stephen Curry’s upper torso before a jumpball, tensions went over the top and Curry and Russell Westbrook started scrapping a little bit. ( .)
Curry, Draymond Green, Westbrook, and Christon were all given technicals for the kerfuffle. That’s the word, right? It’s not really a rumble. It’s definitely not a fight. Maybe a scrap. Kerfuffle feels right.
These two teams hate one another, if you can’t tell. And not “fun-hate.” They hate hate each other. It’s personal, and it has been. Everyone forgets but these two had outright disdain for each other in last year’s conference finals, including a moment where both Westbrook and his now-former-teammate-and-current-hated-enemy Kevin Durant openly laughed in a press conference when asked if Curry is an underrated defender.
Curry, for his part, went on from this to hit a monster 3-pointer at the end of the half to make it a 20-point Warriors lead, even without Durant playing. So no matter what, Curry gets the last laugh here. This is a bad indicator of whether a player is “tough” or not, but it should be noted that Curry didn’t back down one inch and seemed ready to go.
If these two teams play in the first round, it’s going to be the ugliest, meanest, nastiest, blowout sweep series in NBA history.