Everyone gets frustrated at times. NBA players are no exception. You can't blame people for having emotions but when they start to direct their anger towards other players, it becomes dangerous. Some players still do not understand that it's not okay to purposely hurt other players, and if that is their objective, then they should play another sport such as football or hockey.
On the other hand, you have people who are constantly complaining that the NBA is becoming too soft. These guys may change your minds about that. While they may be far from the players in the 90s, they still have an edge to their game.
I am not saying that these guys need to lower their intensity or love the game any less, these are just the guys by today's standards that qualify as being "dirty" players. I'm sure that dirty wouldn't even cross your mind if these guys played in the 80s or 90s, that's just how the game used to be.
Cheap shots can become the easy way out when a player is frustrated. The greatest players can channel their frustrations into fuel for their game. Fighting will never help your team like it can in hockey, it will only hurt them. No momentum is gained for winning a fight, but what will give your fans and teammates momentum is playing hard, and scoring baskets.
This is often a hot topic so post your feedback on who you feel are the dirtiest players in the NBA. Do you agree with the players on this list? If not who would you replace?
I will be listing the NBA players who I feel are the dirtiest because of the things I’ve seen them do or how other NBA players feel about their peers. The "Bad Boy" Pistons would be proud of the players on this list, that's for sure.
Here are the 15 dirtiest players in the NBA today.
15 Kobe Bryant
When Kobe Bryant comes to mind, dirty is not the word I would use to describe him, although he can be at times. Bryant is sly and isn’t often called for fouls and that is why he doesn’t have a "dirty" reputation. Bryant likes to throw elbows when he has the ball and it looks unintentional but Bryant will do anything to win a game including knocking out a player on the other team. Bryant has many highlights of cheap shots for which, he should be held more accountable.
14 Rajon Rondo
Rondo has been involved in multiple incidents throughout his rollercoaster career. In 2012, against the Brooklyn Nets, Rondo got into a fight with Kris Humphries. Another incident arose in the playoffs against the Bulls where Rondo threw Kirk Hinrich into the scorer's table. He immediately proceeded to back away as if he was innocent, which I hate. If you are going to pull a dirty move then at least stand there like a man, don’t back away.
13 Joakim Noah
Noah plays extremely hard and you could even make the case that he plays harder than anyone else in the league. But along with his hard play comes a lot of pushes after the whistle, elbows, and chippiness. Danny Granger called Noah "a coward and a cheapshot." While he hasn’t been as successful as he was a few years ago when he was receiving MVP votes, he still works hard and gets in his licks. He may cross the line though when he shoves people in the back when boxing out or talking trash in players faces. He's certainly not the gentleman on the basketball court that his father was on the tennis court.
12 DeMarcus Cousins
DeMarcus Cousins is certainly one of the biggest whiners in the NBA but dirty might not come to mind when Cousins’ name is brought up. Cousins, in a game against the Celtics, aggressively threw Marcus Smart to the ground. Cousins is such a baby, I guarantee if the Kings were winning, Cousins would have never pulled this. Cousins needs to grow up, he isn’t a kid anymore. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like the Kings will win for a while.
11 Draymond Green
Draymond Green is the human moving screen. Not only does he get away with moving screens, it is essential to the Warriors offense. Moving screens are what power the Warriors and what allows them to get wide open threes. In another play, when Mike Conley was clearly calling for a timeout, Draymond smacked him in the face. There have been multiple other incidents when it comes Green's dirty play and each time people say it may be inadvertent, but could that be the case every single time?
10 Marcus Smart
Marcus Smart is not only a jerk, but a dirty jerk at that. In college when he was at Oklahoma State University, he shoved a fan who was in the stands. While the fan may have been saying inappropriate things to Smart, he needs to take the high road because he is the one on the court. Also, in a game against the Spurs, Smart punched Matt Bonner in the groin. It is hard to say whether it was inadvertent or not (doubt that) but nonetheless, he is a dirty player. He's also a serious flopper but that's another article.
9 Serge Ibaka
Serge Ibaka was another vote-getter when it comes to the dirtiest player in the league award. One of the incidents the gives him the label as a dirty player is the fact that he punched Blake Griffin in the crotch. He also gave Griffin a bloody nose. For God's sake, Matt Barnes (more on him later) of all people said, "Ibaka's just dirty." An anonymous player from the Western Conference said that he believes that Ibaka is the dirtiest player in the NBA and I wouldn’t be surprised if it was one of Griffin's teammates.
8 Steven Adams
Although many may say Adams is just a hard-nosed player, I would say that he crosses the line into the realm of dirty players. NBA veterans are really getting fed up with his moves and have been 'calling him out' in the media. Nick Young and Tony Allen have both called Adams a sneaky dirty player. They explained how frustrating it is because he never gets caught but he is constantly grabbing and setting illegal screens. I swear he grew that ponytail to try to look a little crazier. It worked. His reputation includes using the chicken wing (elbow) and hitting dudes away from the ball. Adams is known for doing the dirty work, but the way he does it earns him this honor.
7 Andrew Bogut
Andrew Bogut believes that he gets a bad rep for being a dirty player because he is an international player. He went on to say that only when an international player such as his friend “Delly” injures someone that it is considered a dirty play. One NBA player says Bogut throws elbows when he sets screens, grabs, and pushes guys in the back every chance he gets. In the end however, Bogut says that he doesn’t care that he is labeled as dirty. He noted that he has never injured anyone even though he may foul hard or set hard screens. He doesn’t see himself as “dirty.”
6 Patrick Beverley
Beverley has earned his dirty reputation. Beverley has been the source of multiple incidents and his tactics don't seem to have an end in sight. Beverley injured Russell Westbrook a few years ago when trying to steal the ball as Westbrook tried to call a timeout. It may not sound all that dirty but even after he injured Westbrook, he tried the same exact thing a year later. Factor that in with his incidents with Damian Lillard and Stephen Curry and Beverley qualifies as a dirty player.
5 Matt Barnes
Matt Barnes has a short temper and it's easy to get him riled up. Maybe all that ink has gone to his brain. Barnes likes to take cheap shots when he can, and he's a guy you want to have on your team, not to have to play against. Barnes is even dirty off of the court. As you may have seen on the news, Barnes drove 95 miles to tune up Derek Fisher. Barnes was heated because Fisher was dating his ex. Reportedly, Barnes was alerted by his kids who called him and told him Fisher was at their house. On and off the court, Barnes is a dirty guy.
4 Kevin Garnett
Kevin Garnett is the king when it comes to setting illegal screens and instigating fights. Garnett certainly has the "killer" mentality. He had a rough time early in his life, and it most likely shapes his attitude on the court. But that is no excuse KG is constantly throwing elbows and then putting his hands in the air as if he is innocent. Garnett is apparently oblivious to the fact that we have the luxury of multiple angles and instant replay! The fact that he often gets away with it makes him even more irritating..
3 Metta World Peace
Formerly known as "Ron Artest", World Peace is famous for his insane, "Malice at the Palace" incident. At a Pacers vs. Pistons game during the 2004 season, Ben Wallace drove to the basket for a layup and believed he got fouled a little too hard by Artest. Wallace didn't take the gesture lightly. He bounced back and shoved Artest in the chest and it only got worse from there. Soon both teams got involved in an all-out brawl. Just as things seemed to be calming down, a fan threw a drink at Artest, which evoked him to attack the fan (he attacked the wrong fan). Soon multiple players were in the stands and things got ugly. World Peace (Artest) got suspended for the rest of the regular season and playoffs. Many people say this is the most significant event that made the NBA soft.
2 Reggie Evans
Reggie Evans’ whole career is based off of his hard work, rebounding and his scrappy defense. He doesn’t have the most skill on the basketball court so he needs to find other ways to contribute. Evans effort may sometimes cross the line onto the dirty side, but it’s hard to blame his when his whole game is based off of that. In 2012, peers voted Evans the dirtiest player in the league. Evans once grabbed Chris Kaman’s nuts…Ouch! Doesn't he know the "bro" code?! That move alone puts him high on this list.
1 Matthew Dellavedova
"Delly" has become known around the league as the scrappiest player in the game. But he has also been voted the dirtiest by coaches, assistants, and players. You can't argue with the people actually playing the games. In last year's playoff run, Dellavedova's dirty tactics injured Al Horford, Kyle Korver and got Taj Gibson ejected for reacting to having his foot squeezed between Delly's legs. While his intense nature may spark the Cavs, other players around the league are pissed off about it. Years ago he may have gotten away with these dangerous antics but he needs to adjust his game to shed this label.