MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Steve Kerr opened his postgame press conference Tuesday night following the Warriors' 106-101 Game 2 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies at FedExForum in the Western Conference semifinals expressing both his sympathy for Gary Payton II after learning he fractured his left elbow not even three minutes into the loss, while also showing his clear anger with Grizzlies guard Dillon Brooks for his dirty play that earned an ejection for a Flagrant 2 Foul that sent the Golden State guard flying to the ground and will keep him out for an extended period of time.
Brooks wound up from behind as Payton went to leap for a dunk and clocked him across the head. It wasn't a basketball play, it was a bad wrestling move at best.
As part of his extended remarks, Kerr said that Brooks "broke the code" between NBA players. Warriors stars Steph Curry and Draymond Green clearly agreed.
Green was given a Flagrant 2 foul that ejected him near the end of the first half Sunday in the Warriors' Game 1 win for an incident that was far less dangerous than what Brooks did to Payton.
"It was kind of out of line in terms of a defenseless player going up on a layup, taking a huge windup and everything bad that could have happened in that situation did," Curry said. "Knocked him out of the game and we'll see what happens with his injury.
"Obviously a tough way to start the game. Talk about Flagrant 2s, it was definitely one of those. Made the right call there. You feel bad for GP. This is his time to shine in a series like this, and a play like that knocks him out. It's tough."
Golden State Warriors
Curry made his feelings known and his frustrations were felt. The last thing the fiery competitor wants to do is lose a playoff game. Even ahead of a loss on his list of what he wants to avoid on a basketball court is seeing a teammate sustain a serious injury.
For how Curry expressed himself, Green went an even stronger, more expletive-laden way when asked about Brooks clothes-lining Payton.
"It was a bulls--t foul," Green said.
Not even 10 seconds after Payton's injury, Green took an elbow to his right eye from Grizzlies big man Xavier Tillman Sr. that took him out of the game for a period of time and required stitches for a laceration. He returned at the start of the second quarter but played the rest of the way with one eye nearly shut.
That's just another issue that the Warriors will have to deal with going forward. Payton is undergoing an MRI on Wednesday to receive further results on his injury, and Andre Iguodala will be re-evaluated Thursday for a neck injury that has held him out of the Warriors' last three games.
The Warriors are leaving Memphis with one win and one loss to open their second-round series, as well as bigger issues to handle than just the win-loss column.