Draymond Green is one of the most scrutinized and hated players in the NBA today, as he is simply one of those players you either love or hate. Unfortunately for Green, if you aren’t a Warriors fan, you most probably don’t like him. A lot of that comes from his off-court behavior and arrogance, but if you just want to look at his on-court performance, Draymond is vastly underrated.
You may be wondering how that is, especially when you look at the fact he averages 8.8 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 5.1 assists per game for his career – Chuck and Shaq would scream “TRIPLE SINGLE!”. Draymond managed to get numerous accolades to his name with those averages, like being a 3x All-Star,3x Champion,2x All-NBA,5x All-Defensive, and 2017 DPOY. That would suggest he is overrated, but the key is that stats don’t show the real impact a player has on the game, especially to the type of player Draymond is.
The 6’6” power forward is known for being an all-around player, not really great at anything except defense and playmaking. Being undersized and not very athletic forced Green to find his niche in the league. Draymond did just that, becoming the ultimate glue guy, being in the center of the Warriors dynasty surrounded by electrifying shooters and scorers. The modern position called the point forward proved to be perfect for Green as he could hide his flaws and emphasize all the good things he can do on the court.
Draymond is the defensive anchor, controlling all the switches and zoning out, ready to help if the defense collapses; as you can’t dispute, he is a tough assignment on that end of the ball. He has the strength to bang in the post with most big men and the speed to switch and do a decent job with guards. That defensive versatility allows the Warriors to leak out often and get easy transition baskets. Obviously, he was much better in his younger days, but he can still do a decent enough job. Don’t forget Draymond’s defensive genius made The Death Lineup a thing.
On the offensive end, Green loves to play from the high post and set up the offense, trying to find his shooters off the pass, baseline cutters, or most of the time dribbling into a handoff with a hard screen that frees up the shooter. He has developed excellent chemistry with the “Splash Brothers,” as he usually just drops the ball into space he expects them to run in. That way, the defense is always on their toes, not knowing where they will hurt you from.
When it comes to creating his own shots, Draymond is very limited, as he gets most of his points off pick and rolls or pops. His jump-shot is very streaky, as he gets left open most of the time. If he were more consistent in that department, he could have been a much more dangerous player. But in the end, it doesn’t matter, as the Warriors don’t need him to be that type of player.
Everybody who plays or watches basketball regularly can appreciate what Draymond does on the court. Doing the little things like setting screens, rebounding, and passing the ball are essential for winning games. When you have a player willing to focus on just that night in and night out to complement some great scorers, you get a dynasty like the Warriors. So even though I find Draymond pretty annoying off the court, he is still one of the more enjoyable players for me to watch because of the pure understanding of how to play the game the right and unselfish way. It’s all about the fundamentals, baby!