Top 5 trash talkers in the NBA currently

Draymond Green and Joel Embiid are two of the best trash-talkers in the NBA
Draymond Green and Joel Embiid are two of the best trash-talkers in the NBA

Trash-talking has always been a part of NBA action, with some of the most memorable players also known for their “trash talk” and sarcastic remarks during matches.

The likes of Michael Jordan and Kevin Garnett are remembered as two of the biggest trash-talkers the league has ever seen, with the latter’s infamous comments about Carmelo Anthony’s wife still lodged in most NBA fans’ memory.

In this article, we look at the best trash-talkers currently in the NBA.

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The top trash-talkers in the NBA currently

While older NBA fans will argue that trash-talking in the modern NBA is nothing like it used to be, quite a few current NBA stars have also garnered a reputation for being regular trash-talkers.

Additionally, the lack of fans due to the COVID-19 pandemic means that there are no jeers or insults from the crowd, which leaves only the verbal fights that players have between themselves. Here are some of the best trash talkers in the NBA, today.

#5 Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook has a multi-faceted personality and is also a fashion icon apart from being the skillful basketball player that he is. The Washington Wizards’ ace recently became the player with the highest number of triple-doubles in the league’s history. However, Westbrook is also a regular trash-talker who finds hilarious things to say to his opponents.

Russell Westbrook of the Washington Wizards
Russell Westbrook of the Washington Wizards

While the star himself has claimed that he does not look for altercations and is merely trying to “defend” himself, quite a few fans might disagree. Westbrook has had infamous incidents with many top players, including the likes of Stephen Curry and LeBron James. The Washington Wizards’ late surge into the Play-In tournament means that Westbrook might be found trash-talking in the post-season, as well.

#4 Joel Embiid

Embiid is well on his way to becoming the league's MVP this time around. His performances on the court has been dominant. The Philadelphia 76ers’ big man was known for his social media activity in the early years of his career and regularly gets into verbal duels with his opponents.

Last season, Joel Embiid had a run-in with the Minnesota Timberwolves' Center Karl-Anthony Towns, a beef that spilled over social media and Embiid ended up using expletive language against his fellow NBA star.

While the players have since reported to have made up, Embiid later claimed that he was done with "trash-talking" despite clearly having a penchant for it.

#3 Patrick Beverley

The mercurial LA Clippers’ guard is known for his defensive intensity and has the ability to stare down the best offensive players in the league. He has had an injury-plagued season that has spared fans from his mercurial trash-talking as well.

Patrick Beverley of the LA Clippers
Patrick Beverley of the LA Clippers

Beverley most famously took multiple jibes at the likes of Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant during the LA Clippers’ Western Conference semifinals defeat to the Golden State Warriors. The Clippers won their first game, which involved Patrick Beverley taking jibes at Curry, as the Warriors were without Kevin Durant.

Beverley did not stop his trash-talking until after the game and was allegedly caught talking about how the Warriors are not the same team without Kevin Durant.

#2 Jimmy Butler

Currently involved in a fight to take the Miami Heat to the playoffs, Jimmy Butler has garnered a reputation as being one of the best trash talkers in the NBA. Most recently, he reignited his duel with former teammate Karl-Anthony Towns, with some of the dialogue coming off as hilarious as it was insulting.

Butler is known for his verbal spats and once berated the entire Minnesota Timberwolves, his entire team, and then went on a public rant against Karl-Anthony Towns and current Warriors' player Andrew Wiggins. Butler was famously called the best “trash-talker” in the league by NBA veteran DeMarcus Cousins, something that he only recently proved might be right.

#1 Draymond Green

Another player who is regularly a part of verbal duels with fellow players and referees is the Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green. Over the years, Green has been involved in tiffs with some of the biggest NBA legends.

The list includes the likes of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and arguably the greatest player that the NBA has ever seen in LeBron James, who he famously called a “b***h” twice during game 4 of the 2016 NBA finals.

Additionally, Green might be the first player to successfully trash talk an entire team, as he did so during a press conference after the Warriors had won the 2015 NBA championship. Green had the following to say about the Cavaliers finalists.

"Klay Thompson? Yup. Splash Brothers? Yup. Cavaliers? Nope. We won? Yup. They suck? Yup. We here? Yup. They not? Nope."

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Edited by david.benjamin
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