For all the talk of how Steph Curry rose through the NBA ranks quickly, and overnight became a superstar, he isn’t even the most surprising story on his own team.
Draymond Green, the undersized small forward from Michigan State, joined Golden State as a second-round pick that would fight just to make the team. He rotated from both forward spots all the way down to the center position, before busting out as a do-everything player in the crazy up-tempo Golden State offense.
Following the NBA Championship the Warriors earned last season, Draymond was becoming a loveable and respected player in the NBA. He got his first big contract, a massive, head-turning five-year deal worth $85 million. But then, in his second season in the prime time, Green dazzled again. Green cemented himself as a superstar, worthy of no real debate, and proved his value to Warriors fans and the NBA.
But for all of his accomplishments, Green also has become one of the more polarizing figures in the game. His bravado and loud play has turned heads ever since he started playing, but this season Green surpassed himself.
This culminated in coming to national attention in the Western Conference Finals against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Green and the Warriors get smacked by OKC early, and drop behind in the series 3-1. In that Game 4, Draymond Green connected on a kick into Steven Adams’ groin, a move that ignited the NBA into a full-on debate, and bring Green’s actions to the forefront.
Green was fined for the hit on Adams, but the jawing between Green and OKC’s Russell Westbrook didn’t stop. The Warriors completed the comeback and met the Cavaliers in the NBA Finals, where Draymond once again found himself polarizing the NBA.
Throughout the Finals, LeBron James and Green locked in contested fits of words and hard play. In a loose ball scramble between Green and James, this chipping boiled over as James stepped over Green, and Green came up, connecting on James’ groin. The ensuing punishment from the league was a one-game suspension, and the Warriors lost their momentum and fell to Cleveland in seven games.
But the ‘Summer of Draymond’ hasn’t stopped after the controversial NBA season. Shortly after the end of the conclusion of the NBA Finals, Green took a trip to East Lansing, Michigan, where he played basketball in college at Michigan State. While partying at a local bar, Green became involved in an altercation with a football player at Michigan State.
The player transferred from the university, and Green again found himself at the center of a preventable situation. But not to be outdone, the Summer of Draymond continued over the weekend, while Green attended camp with Team USA in preparation for the upcoming Olympic Games in Rio.
On Snapchat, Green posted a…ahem…groin shot on his story, instantly sending it to everyone who follows him. Green quickly noticed the slip-up, and rushed to his Twitter to claim he was hacked, before finally admitting to reporters that he had made a mistake.
Draymond Green Posts NSFW Picture On Snapchat, Apologizes https://t.co/wn8EFMHO07
— SLAM Magazine (@SLAMonline) August 1, 2016
The Snapchat debacle is just the latest in a string of questionable decisions by Green. While Green’s tough nature and boisterous attitude has been a large part of the reason the Warriors have been able to be as dominant as they are, it seems as though his persona is beginning to bite him and the organization.
Hopefully this is the last headline we’ll see from Green’s personal life for the rest of the offseason. As fun as Green is to watch when he’s playing well, it’s time to think of the organization. He’s already cost them one game, and while it may not have cost the Warriors the Finals, it certainly aided in the massive momentum swing in the Cavs’ favor.
The Draymond Green story. pic.twitter.com/S1W7St30zG
— NBA Memes (@NBAMemes) August 3, 2016
If the Warriors want to be a historic team, they need their mouthpiece to start showing some restraint, because he’s no help from the bench or behind bars.