Why Kerr 'was just really happy for Draymond' this season

Warriors' Draymond Green

Draymond Green wasn't the only one who thought highly of his bounce-back season.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr did, too.

"I was just really happy for Draymond," Kerr said Friday on KNBR's "Tolbert, Krueger & Brooks." "Last season was tough for him, too. I used to call him 'The Lone Survivor' with [Klay Thompson] and [Steph Curry] both being out. I mean, the poor guy was out there by himself half the time, and it was really frustrating for him. So I was just really happy for Draymond, and he just had a fantastic year and re-established himself as a great player in this league."

Green averaged one fewer point per game this season (7.0) than he did as the Warriors' "Lone Survivor" in 2019-20, but he also averaged an additional 2.7 assists (8.9), 0.9 rebounds (7.1) and 0.3 steals (1.7) per game. He was fourth in the league in assists per game and finished as an NBA Defensive Player of the Year finalist for the first time since winning the award in 2017.

The nine-year veteran also thrived alongside Curry, who played just five games last season due to a broken hand. When Curry and Green shared the floor, the Warriors posted a plus-6.9 net rating. As a team, Golden State's net rating this season was plus-1.1.

Green told reporters after the Warriors' play-in game elimination on May 21 that he proved this season he "can f--k every team's offense up again," but Kerr said Green isn't resting on his laurels. He knows he must work on his jump shot this offseason, since the Warriors were much better with Green involved as a facilitator, scorer and shooter, rather than just the first role.

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Despite having a trophy cabinet most players could only dream of, Kerr said Green is as motivated as ever heading into his 10th NBA season.

"And the exciting thing is, he really wants to win a title," Kerr continued. "He really wants to be back in the limelight as a group, as a team. And he's so motivated this summer. ... We're all bummed that he didn't make the playoffs, but we have to look on the bright side, which is that our team's in a really good frame of mind.

"We're gonna be -- knock on wood -- we're gonna be healthy going into camp, and we re-established that connection between Draymond and Steph, which is really what the team revolves around. Very exciting."

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