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When Draymond Green punched his teammate, Jordan Poole, in the preseason, Minnesota Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert decided to take to Twitter to throw shade at the Golden State Warriors star. Almost six months to the day later, after a Rudy Gobert punch aimed at his teammate Kyle Anderson, Green threw it right back at the big Frenchman.

Rudy Gobert punch gave Draymond Green an opening for revenge

In a crucial 82nd game of the 2022-23 NBA regular season, the Minnesota Timberwolves played the New Orleans Pelicans, with the winner taking the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference. The eight seed is crucial as one win (or a loss and one win) will get that play-in team into the playoffs, while the No. 9 seed has to win two games.

During a second-quarter timeout, the Timberwolves’ Rudy Gobert and Kyle Anderson got into a verbal altercation caught on camera.

According to reports (h/t ESPN), Gobert told Anderson to “grab a ‘bleeping’ rebound,” while Anderson fired back, “Shut the f*** up, b*****.” NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski doubled down on this claim, tweeting that the verbal sparring upset Gobert because “Anderson called Gobert a ‘b****’ repeatedly on a night Gobert was playing hurt.”

This led to Gobert punching Anderson in the chest. Teammates separated the two, and Taurean Prince shoved the big man away. The damage was done, though, and the T’wolves sent Gobert home.

When the game ended, Draymond Green saw his chance to get even with Gobert.

Back in the preseason, after Draymond Green viciously sucker-punched his teammate, Jordan Poole, Gobert subtly subtweeted Green, writing, “Insecurity is always loud.” Following the Rudy Gobert punch, Green wrote the exact same thing, tweeting, “Insecurity is always loud…”

While Gobert took a delayed L at the hands of Green on Sunday, the Timberwolves center has much bigger problems right now.

It seems as though Donovan Mitchell was right about Gobert

Rudy Gobert, Draymond Green, Minnesota Timberwolves, Rudy Gobert punch
Rudy Gobert and Draymond Green | Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Despite losing one of their stars, Minnesota rallied to take a 113-108 win and the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference.

After the game, Adrian Wojnarowski reported the team suspended Gobert for at least the first play-in game, as the big man didn’t travel with the team to Los Angeles to face the Lakers on Tuesday.

And the truth is, the Timberwolves might be better off without him.

Minnesota sent an unconscionable amount of players and draft picks to the Utah Jazz this offseason for Gobert, and he couldn’t help get the team into the playoffs. And when he left on Sunday, it freed up Karl-Anthony Towns and Anthony Edwards to play better and win the game.

This isn’t the first time Gobert has had trouble with teammates, either. In Utah, superstar Donovan Mitchell and Gobert didn’t get along. Multiple reports suggested that Gobert rubbed Mitchell the wrong way, especially after mocking COVID-19 back in 2020, touching all the reporters’ recorders after doing so, becoming the first NBA player to test positive, and Mitchell testing positive shortly thereafter.

Now, he was brought to Minnesota to upgrade the Timberwolves, yet the team is better without him.

Unfortunately, there’s not much the T’wolves can do. They gave up four first-round picks, a pick swap, Malik Beasley, Patrick Beverley, Leandro Bolmaro, Jarred Vanderbilt, and the No. 22 pick in the 2022 Draft, Walker Kessler.   

There is no way Minnesota can get anything close to equal value back, and with three years and $131.4 million left on his deal, no team would take him unless they got picks in return.

This is a tough place to be for the Timberwolves, and it doesn’t seem like there is a way out.

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