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June 7, 2022

Draymond Green

Golden State Warriors

Practice Day

Q. The percentage of shots at the rim in this postseason is at a 20-year low and declining over the past five postseasons. I was wondering if you could speak to how difficult it is to get to the rim, finish at the rim and then defensively the maybe increased priority of protecting the paint?

DRAYMOND GREEN: Well, I think there's an increased priority in protecting the paint because three-point shooting is so good. It goes back to the Steph Curry effect. If you can constantly get into someone's paint, then the world opens up. The three-point shots open up. That's what everyone wants to take away in today's day and age.

Then I think the game is just much more athletic than it was before. Guys are more athletic, and it's just way tougher. Jayson Tatum is 6-10, 6-11, whatever he is. He's a 2-3. Kevin Durant is 7 feet. He's really a 2-3. Like yes, in the way game has changed you'd take Kevin Durant as a 3-4. Kevin Durant started his career as a 2.

When you look at that, the overall length of guys in this league, and then you couple that with the athleticism, it just makes it so much tougher to get to the rim and finish. I think that's a huge change in this game.

Then also teams are hunting more threes. So even the priority for most teams, it is to get in the lane and kick out for a three, as opposed to getting in the lane and finishing at the rim or getting to the lane and getting to your mid-range. It's to get there and kick out. I think that adds to the drop, as well.

Q. We were just talking to Klay. Klay said whenever he has a bad shooting night he YouTubes "Game 6 Klay." That's his thing. Do you have a "Game 7 Draymond" that you YouTube whenever you have a bad game or something like that?

DRAYMOND GREEN: I see your name. I saw last night where you pointed out, or maybe two days ago, where you pointed out that there was a question I was asked about Kevin Durant and that's why I mentioned him. So I want to say thank you for your honesty and for your duty to this job. I know the world that we live in now is all about clickbait and people will cut the question off so they can try to make it appear as if I'm just up here talking about Kevin Durant like I don't have anything else better to do with my life. So I want to say I appreciate you, and just upholding the integrity of media.

When I speak about the new media, that's what I'm speaking about. The integrity of this business has been lost, and bringing that integrity back to this business. So I want to say thank you on your work. That was incredible, and I appreciate that.

As far as "Game 6 Klay," I haven't seen him YouTubing it. The reality is if I did, we'd probably make fun of him. So it's probably good that I haven't.

But I think for us, you tend to go back to those experiences. You tend to draw from that because ultimately when you think about things like from our perspective, especially a shooter like Klay, you always hear the term, oh, get to the free-throw line or get a layup, because you just need to see the ball go through the rim.

It's not always that simple in the game. So if you can go back to that and just a reminder, like, I know I can do that. I know what I'm capable of. I know I can go back, I can feel that and it gets you to feeling good about yourself. I think that's a very big deal. I think that's an underrated thing. It's the power of the mind.

I always talk about how powerful one's mind is. Obviously, we all know that in the world. The power of the mind, if I can see that, I can get that in my memory bank and understand it. Now I can bring that to fruition. Now I can lean up on that. I know I'm capable of doing that.

I definitely have times where I go back and I look at old games. Making shots or defending -- whatever it is that you feel you need to come up with and just try to draw from that experience.

Q. How much through the first two games have you felt that this series is kind of a contrast of styles? And some of the physicality you tried to instill in Game 2, did you feel like that was a response to something the Celtics were doing in Game 1 or just something you saw coming into this series that you felt you needed to respond to?

DRAYMOND GREEN: I just thought it was something that we needed to bring. You get to the NBA Finals and physicality and meeting force with force is important. It's just something that you have to bring to this game.

I thought when I looked back at Game 1, when I watched the film and even just how I felt, I just didn't think they felt us enough. You can't get to this stage, to this level, and the reason you lose is because a team didn't feel you. That's a shame. You have to lose once you get to this level because a team was just better than you.

I wouldn't be able to sleep with myself -- not sleep with myself. I wouldn't be able to live with myself if I'm going on about my summer and we lost the NBA Finals because we couldn't meet force with force. So I think that was just kind of it for me and understanding that, like I said, that is my department. That's where I'm supposed to lead, and I can't let my guys down.

Q. Is there an art to trash talk? Secondly, when a young guy comes and plays against you and it's obvious he either models his game after you or he might even say, man, I watched you growing up, and you talk trash to him, is that fresh meat for you? Is there times you just say, I probably shouldn't have said that?

DRAYMOND GREEN: There is an art to trash talking. If you grew up in Saginaw, Michigan, it's naturally given to you. For me personally, growing up the way I did, you can't survive if you can't talk on the court. You go out there quiet if you want to. You play as good as you want. If you're quiet, they're going to think you're soft. They're going to try to bully you. That's just kind of the way I learned.

For a young guy to -- I think there's a balance, right; like I'm assuming you're talking Grant Williams. Of course you are. I think when you see that, when you see a guy say, man, I grew up watching him, you appreciate it, because that's why you work. You work to create a path for the next young guy. Like, my goal when I came in here was to create a path for Grant Williams.

To hear him say that is an honor, so I don't take that for granted one bit.

When a guy comes and starts -- when you say that and then you start talking junk to me, then yes, I'm going to say something about that. Of course. But I didn't say anything about that Game 1 because he wasn't talking to me. I'm not going to go watch his press conference where he gives me props, where he appreciates my game and then go through it in his face. That's whack to me. I'm not doing that. That's just not how I roll.

LeBron James, when I was wearing LeBron James sneakers in my first one, two, three years and playing against him, he didn't throw it in my face -- like, dude, you got on my sneakers. It's just not something you do.

Once he starts going at me and it got chippy and he's yap, yap, yap, all right, bro, you can't say that and then come and say this. It just doesn't add up to me.

So then you just go wherever you've got to go, and for me that's where I'm going.

Do I feel like, no, man, I shouldn't have said that? No, it's the heat of the battle. You're out there on the court. You get to feel sorry for him or yourself if you want to. It's going to turn on you. No, you just keep it moving. I'm also someone who -- things happen on the basketball court. Things are said on the basketball court. It's the basketball court. I then leave the basketball court, I go home to my life, my normal life. But I am not one that's like, oh, man, such-and-such did this on the court and now I need to feel the way I -- it's the basketball court.

Q. Along those lines, who's a player that you saw growing up that may have taken that out of you in terms of given you that tenacity, that aggressiveness? Two guys that were talking after Game 2 were Gary Payton and Cedric Maxwell. They talked about that they got a glimpse of that old-school, trash-talking physical basketball that they both lived. Obviously, that's been part of your game for a long time, but is there someone in particular that inspired that? Where did that originally come from?

DRAYMOND GREEN: No, I think it just comes from growing up in Saginaw, playing at Vets Park, playing at the Civitan Recreation Center. Obviously, growing up I watched guys like Gary Payton, Rasheed Wallace. I watched all those guys and how they went about their business. Dennis Rodman. Seeing those guys over the years, and I have a huge appreciation for Uncle Oak, how he enforced things.

That's a part of the game. That is a skill.

I have a huge appreciation for those guys. I saw what Cedric Maxwell said.

One thing that baffles me about the '80s or the '90s, or whenever you want to call it when basketball was so much more physical, is some of the guys that be talking weren't the guys that were punching people. They act like guys was just walking around the court, like, I'm hitting this guy in the nose.

There were a few guys back then that would lay you out, that would knock you out, that would foul you and get thrown out the game. Bill Laimbeer. Rick Mahorn. But everybody running around acting like they were that. Y'all were getting bullied. So it baffles me when every guy, just because they played in the '80s, just because they played in the '90s, is like, man, if you played in our day, you'd get knocked out. No, not really, because it wouldn't be you.

Okay, so you're saying Rick Mahorn would have knocked me out? Rick Mahorn probably knocks you out. Bill Laimbeer probably lays you out. So were there enforcers of that time? Of course. Would they have knocked you out? Of course. Their fine was also $2. It's just not the same day and age. If I go knock somebody out, I probably get fined a million dollars. It just don't work the same.

When guys get to making these comparisons or talking about, oh, if you played in this day and age, like yeah. And if you played in this day and age you would have had to be way more skilled than you were. It's just different.

Comparing the physicality of the game and everybody acting like they were just the most physical and brutal enforcers, it's like everybody acting like they shoot the ball like Steph Curry today. You know, it's like then it was physical, now it's shooting. Everybody can't shoot the ball. Imagine me in 20 years, like, man, if you played in my day you had to shoot. Like, yeah, guys did shoot better and more. But that don't mean you shot that well.

So it just baffles me when guys get out here talking and they ain't got -- we got YouTube. You can pull up them highlights and they ain't got no YouTube fights. You see them on the court getting bullied, but they talking about you ain't got punched in the face. These people be killing me.

Y'all enjoy y'all day.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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