Curry, Thompson, Green defend Poole after Morant’s insinuation

The Golden State Warriors blew out the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 3 of their Western Conference Semifinals series, winning 142-112. 

But the score was hardly the story afterwards. Memphis superstar Ja Morant limped off the court late in the game, and replays of a tangle for the ball with Jordan Poole immediately kicked off a heated discourse about whether Poole had committed a dirty play when he swiped at the ball and hit Morant’s knee.

Grizzlies coach Taylor Jenkins said Poole “yanked” Morant’s knee, and he wasn’t sure whether it was on purpose. Morant tweeted, then deleted, a take further insinuating that Poole was going out of his way to injure Memphis’ best player. 


Warriors players, meanwhile, were not interested in litigating whether Poole had broken an unwritten rule. Stephen Curry was perhaps the most forceful in his postgame presser. “It’s not a joking matter that Ja is hurt,” he said. “But the rest of this is BS.” He added, “You know that term hot stove contact? That’s what it felt like. Keep it moving.”

In his presser, Klay Thompson — who laughed when he was informed of Morant’s “broke the code” tweet — also made it clear he wasn’t going to entertain what he believes are manufactured concerns by the Grizzlies. “I’ve had a bad knee injury,” he told reporters. “Jordan had no malicious intent. … He’s not out here clubbing people in the back of the head on fast breaks. We play the game the right way.”

Draymond Green, usually the most outspoken Dubs player, actually took the most diplomatic approach, albeit noting that he didn’t think anything nefarious had gone down. “It looked to me like they bumped knees before [Poole] even reached,” Green said. When he was asked about Morant’s now-deleted tweet, Green actually demurred: “I’m not going to sit here and go tit-for-tat. We have a basketball game to try to win Monday.”

Indeed they do. Game 4 is scheduled for Monday at Chase Center at 7 p.m.

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