Steven Adams reflects on infamous kick to the groin in chat about life as one of NBA's toughest

Steven Adams has given a rare insight into the rivalries seen in the NBA while reflecting on the kick to his groin that was criticised by fans all around the world.

Source: Associated Press

Adams sat down on ESPN basketball reporter Zach Lowe's podcast to talk about his reputation in the NBA as one of the game's toughest players, but the Kiwi centre said he'd be hopeless if a fight broke out.

"Ah, no. No. I can't. Not at all.," Adams said when asked if he could fight.

"People get upset with me. I don't know why. Especially when I first got into the league - that was unfortunate."

Adams said he was happier being portrayed as a "sweetheart" like he was in his book Steven Adams: My Life, My Fight.

But the Kiwi knows he'll forever be tied to one particularly nasty event - the 2016 Western Conference Finals when he was kicked in the groin by Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green.

Living up to the kind-spirited attitude he wants the world to know him by, Adams said he doesn't believe Green did the dirty act on purpose.

"I think he wanted to flail, he intentionally wanted to flail, but I don't think [he thought], 'Let me just pinpoint, accurate, shin right into old mate's crown jewels.' I don't think he thought that.

"I thought he was like, 'Ah, there's contact, flail, bang.' Twice, in the same series. I've got to see if I'm still fertile."

Adams said to further prove his sincereness, you need only look at his recent verbal altercation with Raptors centre Jonas Valanciunas.

"There was a bit of back and forth in the game, and I was getting a bit excited," Adams said.

"I don't usually trash talk, I don't say anything usually; just a bit of banter here and there. I forgot my words exactly, but I basically told him: 'you ain't about this life ... You eat with a knife and fork, I eat with my bare hands' sort of thing.

"I said that at the free throw line and I felt cool in the moment. I felt real cool. I felt great.

"I was like 'that was so sick, that just came out of nowhere. You're brilliant' but then afterwards I was like 'ah it's pretty lame' – I was criticising myself immensely."

However there are times when Adams says gnarly things happen in the game, such as when he was punched by Grizzlies veteran Zach Randolph during the 2014 NBA Playoffs.

"That was a good one though. That one helped us out, a lot. That was Game Six in the playoffs and he didn't get to play Game Seven," Adams said.

"It is just weird getting hit in a game when you're like focusing on one thing and you kinda get blasted and you're looking somewhere else cos someone else cracked you. You're like 'ah, what the hell, what's going on mate?"