Heading into the 2012 NBA Draft, there were some major question marks regarding Michigan State forward Draymond Green.
According to Warriors executive vice president of basketball operations Kirk Lacob, who joined the Runnin' Plays podcast this week, they had the same questions.
"We all liked him as a player, but we all had the same questions and concerns that everyone else did," Lacob explained. "Like what position is he? Is he really athletic enough? Can he shoot well?"
So what convinced the Warriors to select Green with the No. 35 overall pick in the draft?
"One of the top five interviews we ever had was Draymond Green," Lacob said. "We sat across from him and you just, just like now, it's so obvious now, but like ... the confidence, the IQ, the emotional IQ, like this guy had it all. And you sat there and you walk away from the interview like 'How do we not want to work with this person? How is this person ever going to fail?' "
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Despite all the concerns about his size and lack of refinement in his game, Lacob and the Warriors knew one thing about him: "There was no way he was going to fail."
It was not as if Green only impressed the Warriors with his words, however, as his draft workout was one to remember for Lacob.
"He came in and kicked everyone's butt," Lacob said. "He was like yelling and screaming, and I thought the other five guys were just going to quit basketball after ... he was just destroying people."
And yet, the Warriors waited until the second round to select the 6-foot-6 forward, and even had a pick at No. 30 overall in which they selected center Festus Ezeli out of Vanderbilt instead. Lacob recognizes that waiting until later in the draft can be misconstrued that they were not as convinced as they let on.
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"Look, we didn't take him until (pick) 35. We really wanted him and ultimately for us, he ended up at 35 because we thought that was the only way we could get him and Festus," Lacob explained. "We had done quite a bit of intel around the league, we looked at the teams between 31 and 34, and there is always the danger of someone trading in of course, but we did enough intel and we talked to his agent, we thought he would be there at 35 and we did not think Festus would be there, sometimes that's the way that works."
Lucky for the Warriors, Green did last until the No. 35 pick. And they were right -- he really did not fail.