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May 23, 2019

Draymond Green

Oakland, California

Q. How nice is it to get a couple days to get your bodies back?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I think it's great for us. It come at a great time with us having so many guys banged up. We obviously want to be as healthy as possible going into the Finals. This comes at a great time. You usually kind of worry about the rust and having so long off, but we've got a better chance at getting over the rust than we do at getting over the health. So this comes at a good time for us.

Q. You guys have some experience with that rust versus rest thing, too. Does that help you guys, knowing what to do this week?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I think the experience overall helps, whether it's knowing how to keep yourself in shape, how to stay sharp but yet try to find that balance, taking advantage of the rest, as well as staying sharp. I think also with the Finals, it's a completely different beast, with -- as players, we all kind of got our routine, and we like to stick to that. It kind of completely throws you out of that routine. I think all of that helps us, in our favor, being that we've been through it so many times.

Q. When DeMarcus went down, I think a lot of us thought that would be it for the Playoffs. What do you think of the progress he's made?
DRAYMOND GREEN: It's great. We obviously come here every day and we see him in here working, doing whatever he can to get back. We've gotten a chance to continue, to extend our season. Hopefully he's able to get back out there in game action. It was good to see him out there in practice today, so that's a step in the right direction for him, a step in the right direction for us as a team.

Q. How did he look in practice?
DRAYMOND GREEN: Good. We didn't do much, but got up and down a little bit, and he looked good.

Q. Is it exciting to start away for a change or also to not be going to Cleveland, just something different?
DRAYMOND GREEN: It's definitely something different. You know, this is something new for us that we haven't faced, but you know, it's a different challenge. But we usually do well with different challenges, so I'm looking forward to it. I think it's a completely different mindset. When you're starting at home, you're kind of -- you're protecting against everything. You're trying to do whatever you can to win those first two games and go up two on the road. When you're starting on the road, the challenge is to go play loose and try to win one game. It's a completely different mindset. But it's an opportunity that we're looking forward to.

Q. If it's Toronto, how are you going to handle Dre?
DRAYMOND GREEN: Dre can't shoot, nor can he pass. You ever seen Dre play basketball?

Q. Have you?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I saw a couple highlights. They wasn't so high. (Laughter). I really don't care.

Q. What kind of feedback have you gotten from either social media or whatever or friends and family about kind of the new Draymond, the --
DRAYMOND GREEN: I'm the same Draymond. I'm the same guy. No, I'm the same person. You don't -- you don't necessarily change who you are. You can't change the spots on a leopard; isn't that the saying? I am who I am. But I've just tried to tailor some things and use -- better direct my energy. A lot of people have been happy and excited about it. It's pretty funny to me because it kind of shows me that people didn't think I was capable.

Q. What about your mom?
DRAYMOND GREEN: Maybe she didn't think I was capable, either. (Laughter). But then she kind of knows me better than just about anyone, so maybe she knew I was capable, and maybe that's why she was on me so long. I don't know, it's the kind of things you figure out as you grow. I think she knew I had it in me all along.

Q. Was she glad, though? Was she happy?
DRAYMOND GREEN: Yeah. Kind of was walking through the house this morning and I overheard her on the phone with my grandma talking about it. That made me happy. I'm still my grandma's baby, so that makes me happy.

Q. What's Rick Celebrini like and how vital has he been?
DRAYMOND GREEN: He's brilliant, first off. Very smart guy. And he's been very valuable to what we've done this year. He's brought a lot of new things in, when there's recovery in between games, kind of getting on those things right after the game. The strength and conditioning program that they've brought, just more functional things that they've kind of added to our daily routines, it's been incredible, and obviously the work that he's done to get guys back healthy and on the floor, I think Rick is great.

The thing I like most about him is he's a guy who he doesn't think he has all the answers, and he relies on his team a lot. He put a great team together, and the strength and conditioning staff, and also the medical staff, our training staff, he's put a great group together, and they lean on each other. You know, I think that's what's special is he doesn't walk in the room thinking he knows more than everybody or what he says is what goes. We'll go in there and you tell him about something and you'll see him talking back and forth with the rest of the guys in there, getting their opinion and seeing what they think, and then collectively coming up with a plan. I think it's special.

You know, to know what you don't know, and it's not necessarily that he doesn't know something, but it's just like he don't go into it like, well, that's what I think and that's what we're going to do. He takes a completely different approach, and it's special. It's special to have someone like that around. And you know, the entire team in there -- I've spent a lot of time in there earlier this year, and they were great to me, and he's been great this entire journey this year. Really special group.

Q. Knowing his experience with Steve Nash, does that give him even more credibility, knowing what he did for Steve in his career?
DRAYMOND GREEN: Oh, I think -- we kind of live in a day and age where people don't really care what you did before. We kind of live in that -- where it's like history don't really matter to a lot of people, and so with Rick coming in, as great as Steve was and all the things that came out over the course of his career about how he took care of his body and different things, it's great. But you know, all of that's for nothing if Rick doesn't come here and do the things that he's done, which has obviously been a success, but you can come in and work with Steve all you want, and if he doesn't come here and be successful, no one really cares.

So obviously I think that experience is great, but to us what he's come here and done has been special. That means a lot.

Q. Are there any parallels the way you've been playing in the Playoffs to maybe earlier in your career or in college, did you elevate your game in the tournament, and what has enabled you to kind of click into another gear like that?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I think over the course of my career I've been able to elevate. My love of play in the postseason, whether that's the NCAA Tournament or Playoffs, I don't know -- some people just have that, where the stakes are bigger and you're able to increase your level of focus, increase your intensity level. I'm blessed and thankful that I have that. I can't sit here and act like it's just me and I'm macho. I think some people have that and some people don't, and I think I'm just blessed to have that ability when the stakes are higher to be able to rise to that occasion.

Q. You said the other day that in the Playoffs your mindset is one of life or death. Has that always been there, that mentality?
DRAYMOND GREEN: Yes and no. In my first year, just kind of floating through. My second year, the NCAA Tournament it was always like that. I kind of got to the league, and you're just kind of trying to feel your way through, figure it out. But playing my third year when I was a starter, it's been that way since. It was just like -- I don't know, that's just the way it feels to me.

I remember my first time we won the Finals. If you asked me like how you feel, it's like somebody just had like a clamp like on my lungs and like I didn't breathe well for like seven weeks. That's how I felt. And then when we won, it was just like, wow, like somebody just took the clamp and I could breathe again. Like that's just kind of how it's felt for me since I've been a starter and playing in the Playoffs. And I try to keep that feeling, though, because it means something. You know, and I think it should mean something. There's guys that go an entire career and not make the Playoffs. So I try not to take that for granted and try to give everything I've got and leave it all there. You leave it all out there and it don't work out, you can live with that, but I can't live with myself knowing that I didn't leave it all out there when it mattered the most.

Q. What's your reaction to Klay finally getting on the all-NBA defensive team?
DRAYMOND GREEN: He should have been first.

Q. Is that going to be motivation for you?
DRAYMOND GREEN: It's a pretty cool second team to be on. Some demand good defenders on that second team.

Q. A lot of people think the second team is better than the first team.
DRAYMOND GREEN: I wouldn't say that, but that lineup looked good on that second team. So it's all good.

Q. How does not having Kevin available for the start of the Finals affect your mindset?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I think I've just got to keep the same mindset that I've had when Kevin is out. Just continue to stay aggressive, continue to push the pace, try to make plays for everybody. You know, it's not going to be easy, as we know, but nonetheless, as we've said before, we're a very confident group. Whoever we've got out there, we feel like we can win. We've got to go continue to improve on what we've already started with Kevin being out, with the type of play, the level of play we've put out there.

Q. How has your role on offense changed beyond being in screen-and-roll more?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I've got the ball a lot more. Pushing the tempo a lot more. Looking to score a lot more. Just being much more aggressive overall. You know, I like to push the tempo, trying to make up 37 points with Kevin being out. We're not going to make that up walking up the court and thinking we've got someone that we can get the ball to like Kevin. You can't make it up that way, so you've got to find different ways to make it up, and I try to do my job in pushing the tempo and making sure we get extra possessions and make sure we're playing at a pace that best fits the units that we have out there on the floor.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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