Draymond Green 'nowhere near' hitting his ceiling as a player

Draymond Green 'nowhere near' hitting his ceiling as a player

During the 2015-16 season, Draymond Green averaged 14.0 points, 9.5 rebounds, 7.4 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.4 blocks per game, while shooting just under 39 percent from deep.

He was an All-Star, runner-up for Defensive Player of the Year, All-NBA Second-Team and placed seventh in the MVP voting.

Last year he averaged 10.2 points, 7.9 rebounds, 7.0 assists, 2.0 steals and 1.4 blocks per game, but his 3-point shooting dipped eight percentage points to 30.8.

He was an All-Star, All-NBA Third-Team and won the Defensive Player of the Year.

"I've heard I've reached my ceiling since I was a sophomore in high school," Draymond told ESPN's Chris Haynes. "Every year. It never fails. But the one thing I've never understood is how someone can say I've reached my ceiling when I know I'm one of the hardest-working players in the NBA.

"And I'll continue to hear that for the rest of my career. Reached a ceiling, reached a ceiling. And one day I will ... eventually I will reach my ceiling, but I know I'm nowhere near that right now.

"I think I'm just starting to scratch the surface of the player that I can be."

As a rookie, Draymond averaged 2.9 points, 3.3 rebounds, 0.7 assists, 0.5 steals and 0.3 blocks over 13.4 minutes per game, and shot 21 percent (14 for 67) from 3-point territory.

In Year 2, he improved to 6.2 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 1.2 steals and 0.9 blocks in 21.9 minutes per contest, and shot 33.3 percent (55 for 165) from distance.

His breakout season came in 2014-15 when he supplanted David Lee in the starting lineup -- something that originally happened only because Lee injured his hamstring in the preseason.

Remember when Steve Kerr's plan was for Draymond to play around 12 to 15 minutes per game? Crazy how things can change.

"I know I'll continue to get better. There's a lot of things that I want to accomplish," Draymond told ESPN. "I want to continue to win championships. That's always the No. 1 goal for myself, is to try to win championships. Continuing to try to be an All-Star, especially in this stacked Western Conference. Continue to be an All-NBA performer and, most importantly, trying to build a résumé to one day that I can possibly enter into the Hall of Fame."

So how can Draymond get better? Is there anything in particular he worked on this offseason?

"Every summer I pick two to three things to work on. One of those things is always my shooting. I always think I can improve that," Draymond told NBC Sports Bay Area this week. "I worked on my post game a lot this summer, and I did a ton of ball-handling ... when you're balling-handling is crisp you're a better passer."

Draymond will turn 28 years old in March.

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller

It's official -- Steph Curry will return vs Hawks, Dennis Schroder awaits him


It's official -- Steph Curry will return vs Hawks, Dennis Schroder awaits him

OAKLAND -- At a time when the Warriors could use a boost, they’ll get Friday night when Stephen Curry rejoins the lineup as they face the Atlanta Hawks.

The Warriors (53-18) have been shorthanded for two weeks, and still they’ll be without three of their four All-Stars. Curry’s return after a six-game absence, however, will send a jolt of energy through the team and the crowd at Oracle Arena.

The Hawks (21-51), in full rebuild mode, have lost 10 of 13 since the All-Star break, including a 105-90 loss to the Kings on Thursday night in Sacramento before the lightest NBA crowd of the season due to protests in the wake of a police shooting.


Warriors by 9


Stephen Curry vs. Dennis Schroder: Under normal circumstances, this is worthy of attention, but it’s particularly intriguing with Curry making his return. Schroder, who rested Thursday night, is a defensive pest, the type of player whose presence lights a fire under opponents. Not that Curry needs it. He’s downright anxious to get back on the court.


Warriors: F Omri Casspi (R ankle sprain) is listed as questionable. F Kevin Durant (R rib cartilage injury), F Draymond Green (pelvic contusion) and G Klay Thompson (R thumb fracture) are listed as out.

Hawks: G Kent Bazemore (R knee bone bruise), F De’Andre Bembry (abdominal strain), G Antonious Cleveland (L ankle surgery rehab), F/C John Collins (L ankle sprain), G Malcolm Delaney (L ankle sprain) and G Jaylen Morris (L ankle sprain) are listed as out.


Warriors: 6-4. Hawks: 2-8.


Sean Wright (crew chief), Kevin Cutler, Rodney Mott


The Warriors prevailed in the first of two meetings this season, 114-109 on March 2 in Atlanta. They swept the two-game series last season and are 6-1 against the Hawks in the Steve Kerr era.


DEFENSIVE INTENSITY: Green’s absence robs the Warriors of their best defender and emotional leader. How do they compensate? That’s going to be tough. Expect Jordan Bell (who will start) and Kevon Looney to handle most of the minutes at PF. They’re capable and willing defenders, but neither has Green’s savvy.

THE GIFTS: Though the Warriors, even without a full roster, are much the better team, those circumstances have guaranteed nothing this season. They have a tendency to keep games close by committing costly turnovers. The Hawks are second in forcing turnovers (15.5 per game) and third in points off turnovers (18.2).

THE GUARDS: Curry’s return gives the Warriors a fourth guard, with three PGs (Quinn Cook, Shaun Livingston, Curry) and SG Nick Young. Because Curry and Quinn Cook are capable of playing off the ball, there will be several variations. Any two can be paired as a duo. The coaching staff gets to satisfy its desire to experiment.

Former agent Christian Dawkins to blame? Jordan Bell knows 'exactly what happened'


Former agent Christian Dawkins to blame? Jordan Bell knows 'exactly what happened'

So here's a story for you:

At 9:25pm on April 16, 2017, The Vertical's Shams Charania sent out the following tweet:

This angered Jordan Bell, who soon thereafter tweeted twice:

So what actually went down? It turns out that former agent Christian Dawkins -- who is a key figure in the FBI's investigation into corruption in college basketball -- may have been responsible.

Bell explained everything to Logan Murdock on the Planet Dubs Podcast.

"I was mad ... I know exactly what happened. One of the agents I met with -- the one who got in trouble. What's his name? Dawkins or whatever. Something like that. When I met with him, he was throwing me shade -- he acted like he didn't know who I was. 

"We had dinner and he's on his phone like not really paying me attention. I'm like, 'Why am I meeting with you?  You're wasting my time.' ... I kid you not, he didn't read over his (research). It had all of the top power forwards, big guys in the draft. And he was like, 'Let's just look at this.'

"And he's looking at it, and he was like, 'Oh! You're Top 3 in everything!' And he started getting excited and I was like, 'I'm cool. I'm done with this meeting.'"

Bell then explained how one of his coaches at Oregon tried to teach Bell a lesson.

The coach wanted Bell to "be a man" and contact all of the agents that he was for sure not going to sign with to let them know.

Bell didn't want to do that because he wanted to announce he was declaring for the draft on his own terms, without any information potentially leaking to the media.

But the Warriors rookie took the coach's advice and texted Dawkins to say he was going in a different direction.

"And I kid you not, like an hour later, I get an (alert) -- I'm upstairs at my coach's house -- 'I hear Jordan Bell declares for (the draft)' and I just started screaming...

"... I feel like I have to go (to the NBA) now ... when that happened, I was like, 'I really want to go back now just to prove him wrong, just to make him lose all credibility."

Bell quickly came to his senses, and at 10am on April 18, 2017, he retweeted the following message:

Interestingly -- the last line of The Vertical's story that broke the news regarding Bell reads:

Bell is projected to be the No. 38 overall pick in The Vertical’s latest mock draft by Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress.

The Warriors paid the Bulls $3.5 million for the rights to Bell at... No. 38 overall.

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller