The NBA is dealing with a spate of disciplinary issues early in the 2017-18 season, as fights, terse words, and obscene gestures are populating the court and the stands. In the course of reporting on a scuffle between Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green and Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal, ESPN’s Chris Haynes revealed that Portland Trail Blazers President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey was investigated for giving the middle finger from the front row following Portland’s loss to the Los Angeles Clippers last Thursday night, a game in which Blake Griffin downed the Blazers with a buzzer-beater three at the final horn.
Here is the video isolation of Olshey after the play, courtesy of @BenGolliver on Twitter.
And a still of the actual moment.
Haynes’ report has Green irate as his $50,000 fine while Olshey was not similarly disciplined.
"They got presidents of teams giving middle fingers on national TV and nothing's said," he said. "You don't want to shine the light on somebody else. They got someone else to be the bad guy, so, I'll just keep being me.”
The executive Green was referring to, sources tell ESPN, was Portland Trail Blazers president of basketball operations Neil Olshey. After LA Clippers power forward Blake Griffin nailed a game-winning triple in Portland on Thursday, Olshey was seen on camera along the baseline making a nondescript hand gesture.
Sources said the league looked into the matter and learned that Olshey's hand gesture was directed at a close friend, who is a fan of the Clippers, which is why no punishment was issued.
The ESPN article goes into deeper detail on the Green-Beal aftermath, including far more direct quotes from Green about his rationale and complaint.