Draymond Green has been the heart and soul of the Warriors' defense for almost the entire duration of his NBA career.
The 2020-21 NBA Defensive Player of the Year finalist often is compared to Hall of Fame forward Dennis Rodman, who himself won a pair of DPOYs during his NBA career. Warriors coach Steve Kerr, who obviously has coached Draymond since 2014 and played with Rodman on the Chicago Bulls from 1995-98, compared and contrasted the two defensive stalwarts during a Friday appearance on KNBR.
"He is unique, the only guy that I've ever seen who can dominate a game without scoring at all was Dennis Rodman, and Draymond is similar to Dennis defensively, in that he can control a game by just outwitting everybody and guarding all five spots on the floor," Kerr said on the "Tolbert, Krueger and Brooks" show. "But Draymond is a lot better than Rodman was offensively, just because he handles the ball so much and he's a good passer and kinda runs the team for us, and his pick and roll game with Steph is so unique."
Rodman arguably is the best rebounder in NBA history, going seven consecutive seasons pacing the NBA, never averaging fewer than 14.9 boards per game over that span. But Rodman also never dished out more than 3.1 assists per game for a full season, and only finished one season with a double-digit scoring average.
Green had a down 2020-21 season when it came to scoring, putting up just 7.0 points per game. Teams paid little attention to Draymond's outside shooting, as his 27 percent clip shooting from 3-point range was the second-lowest mark of his career.
However, Green also finished with a career-high 8.9 assists per game, which ranked fourth in the NBA. His elite passing ability certainly played a role in Steph Curry winning his second career scoring title and finishing as a finalist for NBA MVP.
Warriors GM Bob Myers told reporters at his end-of-season media availability that Draymond is in tune with the organization and is focused on improving his offensive repertoire this offseason.
“The good news is we're all aligned in that that opens things up,” Myers said. “He wants to do it, too, and he's done it before. ... He's capable. Some of it's a mindset. Some of it is work.
“But we need it. He wants it. He's not going to shy away from that. I think he wants to feel confident in that regard. And so, yes, that ability to be a threat out there is important to us, and we're focused on it and so is he, and we think we can improve in that area.”
If Draymond can be more of a scoring threat next season and get some on-ball respect from opposing defenses, the Warriors will be in much better shape in 2021-22.