The heart and soul of the Golden State Warriors, Draymond Green, has played with an edge as long as he’s played. It’s what has driven him to an All-Star level.
Green is driven by the chip he’s carried on his shoulder since his teenage years, when he was on the blacktop at Veterans Park in Saginaw, Mich. He’ll forever be revved up like a Chevy Camaro, barking and chirping to everyone willing or unwilling to listen.
Criticism is raining down on Green for his actions toward NBA officials this season. The boisterous three-time All-Star leads the NBA in technical fouls (14) — two away from an automatic one-game suspension.
Sure, it’s tiresome to see him constantly bicker, as well as the rest of the team, as the Warriors lead the league in ejections (nine), and are third overall in technicals (47). There’s no secret the relationship between players and refs have gone awry, but that’s an entirely different conversation.
But here’s the thing: Has it affected his play on the court? Sure, Green’s slipped slightly defensively, and who really knows outside of the Warriors’ brass how much soreness he’s dealing with in his right shoulder.
Despite his nagging health issues, he’s still producing identical numbers across the board. Other than the decrease in steals (2.0 to 1.2), you’ll struggle to find much to scoff at on Green’s stat page.
Last postseason, it seemed as though Green learned his lesson from being suspended in Game 5 of the 2016 NBA Finals, one that many believe cost the Warriors a championship.
Surely, he woofed and picked up four technicals during their 16-1 run through the 2017 postseason, but he knew when to cool it.
Unless he gets popped for another monstrous postseason game, I wouldn’t worry too much about his recent flood of technical fouls.
As players and referees continue to improve their relationships, Green won’t stray from who he is on the basketball court. It’s why he’s beloved in the Bay Area. His passion and intensity are what makes him irreplaceable on this championship roster.
You take the good with the bad and the bad with the good. He has a high basketball IQ and gives the Warriors an edge. Why would you want him to change?
A one-game suspension may be on the horizon. And it could be costly and play a factor in Golden State securing home-court advantage throughout the playoffs. However, don’t turn your back on a player that’s exceeded expectations with his gritty play.
Draymond is all-heart with an everlasting fire that carries him daily on a basketball court. His emotions can be volcanic, but it’s what makes the Warriors complete.
He’ll deal with the backlash of saying all officials should be fired and learn from it. He has before, and he’s too smart to not do it again.
Bonta Hill of 95.7 The Game can be heard from 12-3 on the Greg Papa Show. Born and bred in San Francisco, he is a sports junkie who loves to sit in the lab (home), eats breakfast food for dinner, and has a newfound love for tequila. Follow at your own risk on Twitter @BontaHill.