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Draymond Green reveals what motivated him to become a great defender

The one question everyone asked that motivated Draymond to become one of the best defenders in NBA history
Draymond Green accepting the Defensive Player of the Year award in 2017

Draymond Green accepting the Defensive Player of the Year award in 

When Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green entered the league, he was already a great defender. But, NBA scouts weren’t impressed by Green’s resume. So much so that they confronted the Michigan State-product with a question that did not just bother him, but ultimately motivate him to become one of the greatest defenders of his era.

Draft stock

Green was a decorated college standout in his four-year stint in Michigan State. He was crowned ABC National Player of the Year and NABC National Player of the Year in 2012. In addition, Green was also a member of the Big Ten All-Defensive Team in the same year.

These accolades would make you think that he should at least be a lock to get selected in the first round of the draft. As we all know, he was picked 35th overall. And Green knows exactly why his draft stock plummeted and has used it for motivation ever since.

"When I came into the league, I fell in the draft because their No. 1 question was what position would I guard. That stuck with me. And I wanted to make everyone eat those words. Every team that passed me, every reporter, everybody that is anybody who has said anything about my defense at that point. I wanted them to eat them words,"

Draymond Green, NBC Sports.

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It did not take long for Green to make his doubters regret their impressions of him. In 2015, just his third year in the league, Green did not only win his first NBA title but he was also selected into the NBA All-Defensive First Team. Two years later, he was heralded Defensive Player of the Year. And more importantly, he got the respect of his peers.

Snatch the confidence

Shutting up his haters isn’t Green’s sole motivation for playing the best defense he could. There’s also great satisfaction in humbling his foe. Green knows that whenever he forces a stop — be it a steal, a tough shot, or even just breaking a play’s momentum — it affects his opponent's mental state.

"To see what playing great defense, how it can completely snatch the confidence of your opponent, that was enough for me. When you’re playing the game of basketball, when you can take the mind, everything else will follow. If you can take their mind, you can take their confidence. If you can get in their head, everything else follows. Just understanding the success I’ve been able to contribute to teams by giving all that I have on that side of the ball, that’s where it started," Green said.

There’s no question that Green is one of the greatest defenders of his era. Those who claim Green is a triple-singe master are either blind or do not understand the game. The man does so many things that can never be quantified. So whenever you look at the box score and see him with two points, six rebounds, seven assists, best believe that he did other great things on the floor.

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