Danny Green is back for another go-around with the Philadelphia 76ers. His contract isn’t fully guaranteed but he is glad to get another shot with a Sixers squad he has a good amount of familiarity with. He spent two seasons in Philly before being traded in the 2022 offseason in the deal that brought De'Anthony Melton in.
In an appearance on the 76ers Insiders podcast (at the 4:03 mark), Green said that “the main factor in me deciding to come back was Nick, and being able to play for him again.” Green played for Nurse in his first season as the head coach of the Toronto Raptors.
When asked how much it factored into his decision to have familiarity with the team and many players — he spent both of his prior Philly seasons with Joel Embiid, Tyrese Maxey, Tobias Harris, Furkan Korkmaz and Paul Reed and just his second season with James Harden and Jaden Springer — Green admitted that it factored “a huge amount” into his decision.
“Being familiar with the city, being familiar with the team, the group, those guys, having minutes on the floor with them and knowing how they operate was a big decision [along with] playing for Nick. So, both of those combined made it an easy decision for me” Green said. “I knew that I could play in the system or play with those guys and thrive and we know how to play off each other and hopefully figure it out and make it work regardless of who is coaching and who is on the floor. We can make something special happen.”
Green called Nurse a “free spirit” who “thinks outside the box.” Both descriptions certainly fall in line with the reviews Nurse has gotten over the years. The Sixers sought him out after firing Doc Rivers because they sought more creative, aggressive tactics that could make them more formidable in the postseason.
As he reunites with one of his former coaches, Green is excited to see what buttons Nurse presses and to what degree of overlap there is with his work in Toronto. Podcast host/team reporter Lauren Rosen posited that Green will be “the Nick Nurse translator” for the team as one of its oldest players and the lone one to play under Nurse as an NBA head coach and Green agreed. (P.J. Tucker played for Toronto when Nurse was an assistant and Patrick Beverley played very briefly for him in the G League.)
Scheme-wise, Green's fit on the Sixers is very easy to imagine, as his play style would allow him to fit in on virtually every team. Spot-up shooting and defense never go out of style, though at age 36 and coming off of a torn left ACL, the amount of on-court value he has left to offer is uncertain. A veteran leader with lots of championship experience, Green is a great player to be around but Philly doesn’t have many that many roster spots up for grabs.
The Sixers roster is not yet set in stone with the Damian Lillard trade being a potential source of ignition for an additional reshuffle ahead of training camp. Since Green's deal is non-guaranteed, he is easier to move on from in the event that a trade occurs or if Philly prefers to have others on the team.
Still, if Green does suit up for the Sixers again, he'll be ready to contribute to closing out the “unfinished business” he and the group have — winning the title.