Don’t worry, Kelly Olynyk. Isaiah Thomas has your back.
The scuffle between Olynyk and Kelly Oubre Jr. in Game 3 between the Boston Celtics and Washington Wizards has drawn a lot of scrutiny. Oubre was suspended for Game 4 after charging Olynyk following what the former deemed a dirty screen. And because of Olynyk’s controversial history in these matters—i.e. injuring Kevin Love’s shoulder during the 2015 postseason—he’s drawn the ire of outsiders for his actions.
One of these outsiders is Draymond Green, who deemed Olynyk a dirty player on his Dray Day podcast, per the Sporting News’ Jordan Heck:
More context on Draymond Green calling Kelly Olynyk dirty. Says there's a difference between veteran moves and what he's doing. pic.twitter.com/E7Pgl66tYL
— Jordan Heck (@JordanHeckFF) May 8, 2017
This take makes Thomas laugh, per ESPN.com’s Chris Forsberg:
Isaiah Thomas responding to Draymond's comments on Olynyk: "I don’t know how he can call anybody dirty. … It’s a joke that he said that." pic.twitter.com/D2klo8IuSM
— Chris Forsberg (@ESPNForsberg) May 9, 2017
I mean, he makes an interesting point. Green’s past is littered with, um, questionable, um, happy, um, accidents. Or whatever he wants to call them.
As Bleacher Report’s Andy Bailey illustrated:
Draymond Green said he can't respect a 'dirty' player like Kelly Olynyk… pic.twitter.com/pBvgiqhmCd
— Andy Bailey (@AndrewDBailey) May 9, 2017
Green and Olynyk can both be dirty, and Green can consider Olynyk a dirty player. Both these things can be true.
Personally, I don’t view either as exceptionally dirty. Green’s run-ins with the rulebook are magnified because he plays for the Golden State Warriors, and there are guys other than Olynyk who interlock arms with their opponents and set moving screens.
For Green to say that he doesn’t respect Kelly Olynyk, though, is kind of weird. There’s no proof Olynyk plays with deliberate malice. The same goes for Green. Olynyk isn’t a dirty player just because he injured Love, and Green isn’t the cleanest player just because his antics haven’t resulted in serious injury or mid-game brawls.
So yeah, coming from Green, of all people, this sentiment is hysterical.
Laugh away, IT.