Warriors star Draymond Green has made changes to his on-court demeanor because he believes it had become “disgusting” to watch him play.
Green put on a phenomenal display as the Warriors took a 3-0 lead in the Western Conference finals with a 110-99 victory over the Trail Blazers, who had an 18-point lead in the second quarter, on Saturday.
The fiery 2017 NBA Defensive Player of the Year had 20 points, 13 rebounds, 12 assists and four steals for his seventh playoff triple-double and third this postseason.
Green has a history of arguing with officials and was involved in a public argument with teammate Kevin Durant during an overtime loss to the Clippers in November, but the three-time All-Star took a more measured approach with Jordan Bell after the center missed a dunk with the Warriors trailing by eight in the third quarter.
— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) May 19, 2019
Golden State coach Steve Kerr referred to Green as a “wrecking ball” following his exciting performance and said he is not letting anything bother him, something the Warriors forward has been working on.
“I think it [avoiding confrontation with the officials] definitely helps the energy of guys. I still like to pick and choose my spots. Sometimes I may take a tech, but that’s more mindful than just getting a tech. Sometimes I know I need an energy burst; maybe I’ll take one,” Green said.
“But sometimes I’m not mindful, and I’ll get a tech and that will just kill the energy of our team. I’ve really been focused and locked in on that and I realized I got to a point where I was doing more crying than playing.
“I’m sure it was disgusting to watch because I felt disgusting playing that way, and I just wanted to lock back in on the game.”
“I understand that officials aren’t perfect and I still have conversations with them now, when they miss a call, but it’s a completely different conversation.”
“My mom has been really big. My fiancee has been really big, just talking to me about that and just telling me to stay locked in on the game.
“I also have some little ones at the house that are enjoying watching me play. I don’t necessarily want them to see that. So [I] just try to be more mindful of it.”
Game 4: Monday (5/20), 9pm/et, ESPN pic.twitter.com/RUBvfA3HZC
— NBA (@NBA) May 19, 2019
Green, who was in double digits for rebounds for the eighth game in succession, was key as he consistently pushed the ball in transition, but he is willing to take a back seat when Durant and DeMarcus Cousins return from their respective calf and thigh injuries.
“I feel great, and just trying to bring whatever I’ve got to bring to the table to help this team win, to help DeMarcus [Cousins] and Kevin get back out there on the floor,” he said.
“When we have Steph [Stephen Curry], Klay [Thompson], KD, DeMarcus, I don’t need to play like that. As crazy as it sounds, somebody has to give up something when you have that many guys who are capable of doing what they are doing.
“I take it upon myself to be the guy to give that up. I think I’m playing great right now but I’m not the scorer that those four guys are.”
“If I’m wide open and Klay is half open, I think it’s still a better shot if I give the ball to Klay. That’s just my mindset where we got all our guys on the floor but when they are not, I have to have a different mindset to step up for the team, as everyone has stepped up their game a notch.”
Draymond Green (20 PTS, 13 REB, 12 AST, 4 STL) joins Fat Lever (1989) and Russell Westbrook (2019) as the only players in @NBAHistory to record at least 20 points, 12 rebounds, 12 assists, and 4 steals in a postseason game! #SAPStatLineOfTheNight pic.twitter.com/aIMjjsbY2l
— NBA.com/Stats (@nbastats) May 19, 2019