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Draymond Green has put renewed emphasis on not arguing with referees

Draymond Green, Warriors

Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green has been fighting himself more than the referees in what has been a war of attrition against the officials in the past two seasons.

A key play in the fourth quarter against the New Orleans Pelicans tested his mettle, as a charging Julius Randle came crashing onto him and kneed him in the man zone while he was whistled for a blocking foul, adding insult to injury. Green was unable to get up right away due to the pain, but makes his displeasure known to the officials, barely escaping a technical foul.

The Draymond of a season ago would have been relentless in berating the official, but he’s managed to channel those emotions into positive plays that turn the tide in favor of his team.

“You just find energy in different things. You direct your energy towards different things,” Draymond told reporters after the win, according to Drew Shiller of NBC Sports Bay Area. “That’s been a point of emphasis for me this year — to not waste all my energy arguing with the referee about the call. It’s not gonna change.”

“So just turn the page to the next play and try to make something else happen. I was able to do a little bit of that and it helped obviously keep the game in our favor.”

It helps that Green has an ongoing bet with DeMarcus Cousins on who gets the least amount of technical fouls (and yes, Cousins will likely miss about half of the season) — keeping him honest to his promise.

Through nine games this season, Green is winning the bet with only one technical on the season, as Cousins was ejected from the bench during a verbal spat with New York Knicks center Enes Kanter.