An open letter to Draymond Green

Urbs: 'This thing with the refs? You gotta knock it off'

Mychael Urban
January 08, 2018 - 11:22 am

Dear Draymond,

First, please understand that the words I’m about to deliver are delivered with mad love and respect — for who you are, and for what you do, on and off the court.

You’ve broken new ground in the game, creating a lane for like-minded players who might not be as talented as the “superstars,” but by selflessly doing a little bit of everything, and doing it damn well, they’ve found a new niche. You’re the prototype of a new, and long-needed, type of All-Star.

You’re also the unquestioned Heart and Soul of my favorite team, and the work you do in the community cements your standing as an all-time Golden State Warrior.

So thanks for all of that. Like I said, mad respect, mad love.

But bro. Dae-Dae. This thing with the refs? You gotta knock it off. Like, now. Today. And forever.

Look, nobody doubts that you’re getting hosed by NBA officials. We see it, too. But apparently we see something you don’t, and nobody in your circle has the sack to point it out to you. Or maybe they are and you’re just not listening.

Regardless, I’ll take one for the team, at the risk of pissing you off. And as every NBA ref knows, being the subject of Draymond Green’s wrath is nothing nice.

It’s worth the risk, though.

So again, Dae-Dae. I’m begging you now. Knock it off. Stop it. Just stop.

“It’s personal,” you say. They’re out to get you. Well, and I’m going to try to be as delicate as humanly possible here, but well … No SH--, Sherlock!

Of course it’s personal. Refs are human beings, and human beings hold grudges. They don’t like being belittled in public, and if they are, they’re likely to retaliate with any ounce of power they hold. For refs, that power is in their two hands, in the form of a T.

Sure, they’re supposed to be bigger than that. But it’s no different than the media. We’re SUPPOSED to be objective. We’re SUPPOSED to be above it all.

But guess what? We’re not. Even those among us who’ll scream the opposite to anyone who’ll listen. Like refs, we’re human. And we, too, hold grudges.

For instance, Mark Redmond was an absolute a-hole when he played for the A’s and I was an A’s beat writer. He was difficult. A jerk. A Richard. And as a journalist, I was supposed to not let that color my coverage.

But it did color my coverage, and the colors were dark. I’m not proud of it, but I’ll admit it: When I got a chance to bury him, as I did when writing a book about The Big Three during the 2004 season, I took it. I buried Redmond.

Because I could. He deserved it.

That’s how the world works, man. Even in the NBA.

Maybe it’s not fair. Maybe it’s wrong. But it’s reality, and so is this: It’s all your fault. You created this monster, and only you can get the toothpaste back in the tube.

So just stop it, Dae-Dae. Shut the hell up. Starting today, don’t say another word to an NBA official. Don’t do the mocking applause thing. Don’t even LOOK at the refs.

Do that for a month. In fact, make it two months. It’s gotten that bad. But if YOU knock it off, it all goes away. KD chills. Iggy chills. Steph gets the calls he deserves. I promise.

Like it or not, you’re contributing to an unflattering national take on the Warriors. As whiners. So please, please, please, please, please. A million times please. Just. Knock. It. Off.

We’ll all be the better for it. You’ll still be great, the refs can go back to focusing their revenge Ts on Boogie Cousins, and the next time a pivotal Game 5 rolls around in the NBA Finals, we know you’ll be ready to roll.

Thanks, man. I believe in you. You can do this. You must.

Respectfully (and with mad love),

Urbs

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