Like what most people do when the New Year commences, Draymond Green also looked back at how 2016 unfolded for him. It has been a very eventful year for the Golden State Warriors forward to say the least, but he knows there are more good memories than those he wants to quickly forget.
“Outside of losing a 3-1 lead (in the NBA Finals), everything has been amazing, I have a son now.”
“It just gives you a completely different outlook.”
The next 12 months also give him a chance to put all his on and off court troubles of the past behind him and now he is ready for a fresh start. According to some members of the Warriors, like Stephen Curry, he has already started working on it by having a conscious effort to minimize his outbursts.
“He’s obviously very aware of his actions on the court: what he says, how he conducts himself. He’s not changing who he is at all, but he’s being mindful of the impact he has on our team every single night we go out there and play. It’s been great to see.”
Head coach Steve Kerr also noticed that Green now has a better understanding of what being an All-Star truly is.
“Last year, I think things changed a little bit in terms of his role. Not only on the team, but in the league. I think he had to learn some things in terms of the responsibility of being an All-Star. He would tell you he’s made some mistakes.”
Even the team’s general manager, Bob Myers, also chimed in on the improvements his starting power forward has made and he even described talking to him as “genuine.”
“Those things in the summer forced some conversations. You can oftentimes hear in someone’s voice how contrite they are, or what level of remorse they have. Whether I was talking to him on the phone or speaking to him in person, I could tell that he was genuine.
“The fact that all those things happened in succession, they forced a real accounting on his part.”
The Warriors currently have the best record in the NBA with a 29-5 slate, and now that Green is looking to have a better version of himself in 2017, it will be a welcome addition to the Dubs who are looking to make it to the Finals in three consecutive seasons. It will also not come as a surprise if they’ll be able to maintain their strong hold on the Western Conference with Green showing signs of maturity.