Draymond Green made plenty of headlines on Monday night, and only a few of them had to do with his career-high-tying 16 assists.
Following the 129-98 blowout win over the Cleveland Cavaliers, Green spent the majority of his postgame press conference venting about the public backlash players get for demanding trades, compared to the treatment franchises get when they bench players who are on the trading block.
Warriors coach Steve Kerr has an interesting perspective on the situation. Following his 15-year NBA playing career, Kerr spent 2007 to '10 as the general manager of the Phoenix Suns.
Kerr joined “Damon, Ratto & Kolsky” on 95.7 The Game on Tuesday to share his thoughts on Green’s rant.
“When a player demands a trade he’s vilified and when a team announces that they want to trade somebody, everybody sort of shrugs and moves on,” Kerr told 95.7 The Game. “There’s some truth to that. That’s just sort of part of the deal, too. As an athlete, as a coach, you kind of sign up for this knowing that you’re going to get hit by the media, you’re going to get booed by fans when things don’t go well.
“I think it’s just different when you’re an individual as opposed to an organization. It’s two different entities. The perception changes. I agree with Draymond. That’s just kind of part of the deal.”
As part of his argument, Green noted how fans and media piled on superstar James Harden for demanding a trade from the Houston Rockets earlier this season. Meanwhile, the Cavaliers told Andre Drummond not to dress for Monday’s game against the Warriors, ostensibly to keep him healthy for an imminent trade.
Kerr said he sees both sides to the situation.
“You can imagine, when you’re a player, it definitely hits home harder than if you’re a coach or a general manager,” Kerr said. “I think at this point, being 55 years old and being a part of the NBA for this long, you just sort of see it for what it is, which is kind of a harsh business. It’s a great job, but it’s one that’s filled with a lot of stress and a lot of things that can upend your life.”
Green’s teammate Andrew Wiggins knows a thing or two about hearing his name dangled in trade rumors. Wiggins said he backed up Green’s sentiments on the issue.
“What he said resonates with a lot of players in the league,” Wiggins said on the same show Tuesday. “It’s the business that we live in. It’s unfair. Like he said, hopefully it changes. Players have to be protected, too.”
Green continues to be a strong voice within the NBA community as he gets later into his career. His game is evolving, too, as he’s turned into a playmaker and distributor on offense despite lining up as a center the past couple of weeks.
“That’s who is, that’s what he does,” Kerr said. “He’s having an amazing season. He’s just playing at a really high level. And, as you guys well know, he’s always going to have an opinion and something to share.”