Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green wanted to attend the game where LeBron James broke the NBA’s all-time scoring record, but head coach Steve Kerr did not think it was a good idea.
James broke Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s record on Feb. 7 against the Oklahoma City Thunder in front of the home crowd in LA, and Green was not present.
Golden State was battling for their playoff lives and faced a matchup with the Portland Trail Blazers on Feb. 8.
Kerr thought it would send the wrong message for Green to fly to Los Angeles the day before Golden State’s game, so Green missed out on being in attendance for history.
“Yeah, I was definitely going,” Green told Andscape. “It was a TNT game. I was doing the broadcast and Steve said, ‘I don’t think that’ll be great for our team. While we’re flying out on the road, you’re flying to LA, guys see that, guys see you on the TV calling the game. This is a big game for us against Portland.’ I said, ‘All right, respect. No problem. I’ll be there with my team.’
“I flew to Portland, we got to get a win and we’re here. So, it definitely was something that I wanted to be present for. It was just such a big moment in life and friendship. But there will be other big moments and we’ll create great memories.”
Green and James have developed a friendship off the court after years of battling each other on the court.
“We’ve played this game for so long and we have a great relationship that lies off the floor that people don’t want to understand,” James said. “And that’s OK, who cares. That doesn’t stop us from going out and competing at a high level and wanting the other to not be successful when we go up against each other.”
The two future Hall of Famers will renew their rivalry on Tuesday as the Lakers travel to San Francisco for Game 1 of their second-round series.
It’s the first playoff matchup between the Lakers and the Warriors in 32 years, but just the latest time a Lebron James-led team will square off against Steph Curry and the Warriors.
“It’s going to be epic,” Green said, according to ESPN. “You got Steph, you got Bron doing it all over again.”