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Green banned for five games by NBA after putting Gobert in headlock

The NBA has handed Draymond Green a five-game ban after the Golden State Warriors forward put the Minnesota Timberwolves’ Rudy Gobert in a headlock during Tuesday’s ill-tempered game between the teams.

Green was one of three players ejected – alongside team-mate Klay Thompson and Wolves forward Jaden McDaniels – when a fight broke out within two minutes of the game, which Minnesota went on to win 104-101.

As Thompson and McDaniels grappled with one another around the half-court line, Green grabbed Gobert around the neck from behind, choking him for several seconds.

In a statement, the league said Green would be made to sit out five games without pay for “escalating an on-court altercation” and “forcibly grabbing” Gobert.

The league called the action “unsportsmanlike and dangerous”, while saying Green’s “history of unsportsmanlike acts” contributed to the lengthy nature of his suspension.

Green will now miss two games against the Oklahoma City Thunder, as well as meetings with the Houston Rockets, Phoenix Suns and San Antonio Spurs. Thompson and McDaniels were each fined $25,000 for their roles in the incident.

Gobert referred to Green’s actions as “clown behaviour” in the aftermath of the game, calling on the league to hand a harsh punishment to a player who has been ejected 18 times since entering the NBA in 2012 (including regular-season and playoff games).

This will be the fifth suspension Green has served throughout his career, with the most recent one causing him to miss Game 3 of last season’s first-round playoff series against the Sacramento Kings after he stamped on the chest of Domantas Sabonis.

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