It doesn’t take much to motivate Draymond Green, and it appears Kendrick Perkins has lit the fuse.
After his best performance of the postseason, a 14-point, 15-rebound, eight-assist masterpiece in the Warriors’ closeout victory over the Grizzlies Friday night, Green went off on the ESPN NBA analyst who had been critical of him.
“Something came to my phone earlier,” Green told reporters. “Some guy saying I’m scared to shoot the basketball. Scared and me in the same sentence is brutal. But you got a big ogre on TV talking about what Draymond says ain’t the gospel. It is the gospel. What I say is the gospel. When you say that multiple times on several different segments, you must think what I say is the gospel. So, you got to come out and shut some guys up sometimes. When you got people talking out the side of their neck. ‘Anybody can make the pass Draymond make.’ That’s just stupid.
“But these are people who get employed to talk on TV about our game. ‘Anybody could make that pass.’ You make that pass. We’d love to see it. I played against the guy by the way. I’m talking about Kendrick Perkins for those of y’all that don’t know. I’m never duckin’ no smoke. As the Memphis Grizzlies’ towels say, I don’t duck smoke. ‘Anybody could make that pass.’ You couldn’t, so good luck. You just got to come out and shut people up sometimes. It was very fun to do.”
On “First Take” Friday morning, Perkins criticized Green for shying away from taking big shots.
“Matter of fact, can somebody tell Draymond Green it’s OK to look at the basket and actually shoot a shot?” Perkins said. “I mean, because he’s afraid. I mean, I’m sitting up here seeing all the turnovers. He doesn’t even look at the basket.
“He’s afraid of taking the shot right now. So some of those assists he’s getting to Steph Curry, Jordan Poole and Klay Thompson, I could go out there and get those same assists. They wide open. Ain’t nothing but a pass. So don’t let Draymond Green sit up here and fool you like everything that come out his mouth is the gospel.”
Perhaps it worked. After taking just 17 shots in the first five games of the series, Green attempted 14 on Friday and made six of them.
Perkins posted a video response to Green and hit back while giving him credit for his performance.
“Hey Draymond, ‘ogre’? What you call me? Hey listen, you ain’t handsome. You damn sure ain’t cute,” Perkins said. “Man, I’ve been having a dime on my side, my wife been by my side since the 10th grade before the NBA logo, before Jerry West was on my side I’ve been having mine, you know what I’m saying?
“That’s neither here or there, but at the end of the day, man, look I ain’t none of these other cast members I’m gonna say what I wanna say. And at the end of the day, man, like I said, you weren’t being aggressive like the Draymond of old. Yeah, you did jog die in the night, but thinking I’m going be quiet or make amend, look, you got the wrong one. I ain’t gon’ shut up for nobody. Man, look, I ain’t bought none of that. I ain’t bought none of that.”