The first round of the NBA playoffs typically doesn’t see many upsets. In fact, average basketball fans are more or less waiting for the semifinals, unless their favorite team is competing. For that reason, it’s hard to get too jacked up for the first round. With that in mind, the recent trash talk between the Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors guarantees it will be the most hyped series of the eight that will take place.
For those who are unaware, the Clippers and Warriors aren’t too fond of each other. It has been going on for about two seasons, but the feud was put under the microscope for all to see during a contest on Christmas Day. Los Angeles’ Blake Griffin and Golden State’s Andrew Bogut got into a disagreement, which led to Griffin’s ejection. The power forward wasn’t too happy and called out the Warriors for playing “cowardly basketball.”
Now that it’s known the Clippers and Warriors will square off in the first round, Golden State guard Klay Thompson decided to get a jump-start on the trash talk. The only way to infuriate a player of Griffin’s skill level is to call him a flopper, which is something physically intimidating players don’t want to hear. Thompson decided to do that and then some on a local radio show.
“He is a good guy off the court but he probably just … I mean … plays pretty physical and flops a little bit,” Thompson told The Wheelhouse on 95.7 The Game radio in San Francisco.
“He flairs his arm around so you know you might catch a random elbow or something that doesn’t you know rub off too well on guys,” Thompson said. “He’s kind of like a bull in a china shop, kind of out of control sometimes. And then you do just see him flop sometimes like how can a guy that big and strong flop that much.
“I can see how that gets under people’s skin and be frustrating to play against.”
Flopping in the NBA has been an issue for quite some time, one that the league has attempted to correct. It’s certainly not news that Griffin does it, just as no one would be stunned to see LeBron James take a tumble. The last thing the fans want to see is players trying to convince the referees one way or another in a game that carries plenty of meaning.
As far as the jawing is concerned, the hope is that we can expect plenty more of it. I have to imagine Griffin and the Clippers will decide to get their revenge on the court, but anything is possible. It will be interesting to see how physical the series will be now that both teams are aware of what they think of each other.