The Los Angeles Lakers may be NBA champions right now but that didn’t save them from the wrath of fans at points during their playoff run. Lakers fans have come to expect championship play from the team and anything less than that causes problems. Jared Dudely and Kyle Kuzma are just a couple of players that have drawn the ire of fans in the past.
Dudley opened up on the Load Management podcast.
“I’ve got to be honest with you. I’d be honest with you, I’d tell you if it bothered him,” Dudley said. “It didn’t bother him. You heard him, it’s for jokes. Kuzma, let me be honest with you: You don’t think we make fun of his outfits coming in sometimes, like we bashed on everybody. … We see everything, ‘oh, man, Dudley doesn’t deserve a ring. Man, I put 20-some years in this game and I don’t deserve it? Man, you can’t listen to it, man. You know this. With success, you’re gonna have your loved ones who think you’re the best, your mom who thinks you’re better than what you really are, and you’re gonna have some haters, that’s just how it is.”
Danny Green was perhaps the biggest target of fan hate, especially after he missed a series-winning shot in Game 5. Fans went so far as to start a petition to not give Green a ring if the Lakers won the Finals. Iconic Los Angeles rapper Snoop Dogg was one of Green’s biggest critics and Dudley took a shot at him.
“Now, the petition is low-key kinda funny. Like, really? Those aren’t true Laker fans, like Snoop Dogg calling out Danny Green and then when we win feeling good. Like this man Danny Green has won three championships on three different teams, being a starting shooting guard. Are we kidding? Like come on, man, like I agree, he missed a shot. He struggled at certain times, but the man is a career 40 (percent shooter).”
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Dudley Defends Green
Green does have a reputation as a sharpshooter but he didn’t show that in the recent playoff run. Regardless, Dudley still came to his defense”
Nah, nah, because I’m someone where I don’t question your fandom, because for one, he’s solidified, he’s cemented when it comes to fandom. I’m questioning your tactic on a trying to help a player help win your team a championship. … My only problem with it was you can’t call no man a b****. … My whole thing is when you come to that, now we’re getting on something personal. And you know when you grow up, I don’t care what age you are, you hear that word, you’re automatically thinking fighting. We’re not fighting Snoop Dogg. He’s a fan. …
My whole thing was that he wanted to win so bad, (he) got out of character. We all get out of character. I do that with my kids when I get mad at them when they slip up and I say something or do something I regret. I get it, but it’s like listen, you don’t think this man wants to hit a shot? This man shoots hundreds of shots every day. You don’t know what he’s going through in his personal life, you don’t his body. And you know what? No fan wants to hear all that. I agree. You don’t have to hear about it, just let the man work his way up, and look at it, next game, we win, he hits two threes, and now all is forgotten.
What doesn’t show up on the stat sheet is that Green is one of the team’s strongest defenders. He missed a lot of important shots but the Lakers still won in the end.
Green Was Injured During Finals
Missing the winning shot in Game 5 of the NBA Finals was likely a low point for Green, who has now won multiple championships. However, what wasn’t made public was the fact that he was banged up in the series. On his Inside the Green Room podcast, Green hinted at an Achilles injury he was dealing with.
It was pretty clear Danny was hurt more than he was letting on. During this episode, he just mentioned pain in his Achilles (that was never on the injury report).
— Championship Faigen (@hmfaigen) October 17, 2020