After the Warriors’ win over the Pistons on Saturday, Detroit forward Rodney McGruder approached the Golden State bench area. (Won’t someone think of the coronavirus protocols?!) McGruder was apparently upset with something Juan Toscano-Anderson told Wayne Ellington during the game.
Injured Warriors star Klay Thompson – appearing on NBC Sports Bay Area’s telecast – reported on the postgame incident in real time:
I don’t know. This dude might be out of the league soon. He’s probably mad about that. Who knows?
He over here trying to start something like he’s a good player or something. It’s like, “Bro, get out of here. You might be” – sorry, alright, we’re done. We’re done.
Thompson might have been done, but Draymond Green sure wasn’t.
Green, via Ali Thanawalla of NBC Sports Bay Area:
“I don’t know. I was in the locker room. But apparently he was taking up for Wayne Ellington,” Green told reporters on a video conference call. “When the f–k did Rodney McGruder become the tough guy? I don’t know, man, everybody in the league tough these days. It’s crazy. I’ve seen a lot of tough guys this year. I don’t understand it. And don’t nobody do anything. Like if you really wanted to do something, you could have done it. Walking over there talking s–t like he a tough guy. Get the hell outta here. F—ing tough guy Rodney. Tough guy. Also, I’m rocking with Juan T. Juan T was about to bring that Town Bidness s–t out on him. Yeah, I’m rocking with Juan T on that one anyway.
“Also I think it was something Juan said in the first or second quarter to Wayne Ellington. You got nothing better to do that you’re still thinking of something from the first or second quarter when you weren’t in the game. So apparently, Wayne Ellington must have went over to the bench. I guess he went and told McGruder because he hadn’t been in the game. Yeah, I don’t know. There’s too many tough guys in the league these days for me. But I know no one scared of no damn Rodney McGruder, like f—ing kidding me? Insane. But Klay said it best. Klay said it best. Leave it at that.”
Ellington, via Rod Beard of The Detroit News:
Despite all the accusations of players being fake tough… I don’t think it applies to anyone in this situation.
Green is tough. He has proven that on the biggest stages.
Just because McGruder isn’t as good of a basketball player doesn’t mean he’s not tough. McGruder – from Prince George’s County, Maryland – went undrafted but, through sheer determination, forced his way into the NBA. Onto the Heat and their renowned culture, no less.
In similar ways, Toscano-Anderson – an Oakland native who went undrafted – has proven his toughness.
This weekend wasn’t a shining example of anyone’s toughness. There was just a bunch of yapping.
But that doesn’t make the talk bad, either. McGruder stuck up for a teammate. Thompson* and Green stuck up for a teammate.
*Thompson’s “might be out of the league soon” sounded harsh on a telecast. It was also totally within the bounds of how NBA players talk trash to each other.
Really, everyone involved sounds mostly similar – even when criticizing the other side. Of course, with the machismo fueling these exchanges, nobody involved would admit that.