June 12, 2022
Golden State Warriors
Q. Obviously the entirety of the fourth quarter didn't go the way you wanted it to, but can you take away some things that you did late in that game when you kind of got going and carry them into the next contest?
DRAYMOND GREEN: Yeah, just make an impact on the game. That's what I do. I impact winning. I did that down the stretch, and I need to carry that over into Game 5.
Q. What was the switch? How did that change?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I think I made an impact on the game the whole game. I think you can get caught up in everything that's going around, but those that watch and understand basketball, I made an impact the entire game. So I don't think there was a switch last couple minutes.
Q. As impressive as it is what Steph has been doing, how conscious are you and the team of making sure he has enough scoring help and making sure he doesn't have to carry too much of a burden?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I don't think anyone goes into it thinking, oh, man, you have to make sure Steph doesn't carry too much of a burden. I think you just go into it with the goal of doing your part. If everyone does their part, you give yourself a chance to win the game.
So I don't think it's -- you go in thinking that specific. But you just go in and make your impact however you may.
Q. You've made it very clear how much you respect Jayson Tatum's game. What do you view as a challenge for him in this series against your defense in the NBA Finals for the first time and what is the test for a young guy in that situation for the first time?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I mean, it's tough. You're experiencing something for the first time. I think he's handled it well. He's maybe not shot the ball as well as he'd like or everyone else would like, but overall I think he's been playing well, and that's why it's a 2-2 series. Coming back for Game 5.
I think he's handling it all extremely well. He's taking what the defense gives him, and that's what great players do. But I think he's doing a good job.
Q. When did you fully grasp your importance to this team? You guys had the seven-game series against the Clippers and you went on to win championships. When did you fully grasp how important what you bring every night is to this team?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I think it's evolved over time. I don't think there's one specific instance where I'm like, man, I'm really important to this team. I think just over the course of time you kind of see it grow, your importance, your impact, what you bring to the floor. And then can that team over the course of time, you realize, oh, man, this team doesn't operate the same if I don't do X or if I don't do Z.
I think for me, it's just been a consistent process, and I think over the course of time, those things change. Sometimes you need this. One year you may need that.
But I think when you're doing it for so long, sometimes those things change.
Q. Two or three games left here; how much of this is finding some sort of adjustment to make, and how much of it is just two teams, whoever does what they do better comes out on top?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I think anytime you get to this point in the season, there's not many huge adjustments you can make. Like I've said before, they know who you are, you know who they are. You're not going back to reinvent the wheel. You're not going back to change your playbook. You're not going back to change your personnel.
I think in understanding that, you have to do what you do to the best of your ability. Both teams are attempting to do that. I think we pose some challenges for them that they have to overcome. They pose some challenges for us that we have to overcome.
It's no surprise to us being here they do the things they do well, and you have to try to combat those. I think we've done that at times in this series, and at times in this series they've got the better of us.
It's just a matter of who can do that more consistently, that's who will win the series.
Q. I'm coming from Turkey, from Europe, so you have lots of fans in Turkey who are waking up at 4:00 a.m. to watch you and they're supporting you a lot. My question is for them, what would you say has been the most remarkable moment during this NBA Finals so far?
DRAYMOND GREEN: The most remarkable moment in these Finals I think was going on the road and winning Game 4 for us. Anytime you can go on the road and win in a hostile environment, it's always a great feeling. To see Steph Curry put on the performance that he put on, I think that's one of those performances that obviously you have to win the championship, but if you win the Finals, that's one of those performances that you look back in history, like man, I remember this performance, I remember where I was when that happened, and you kind of remember the plays and all how it went down.
I'd have to say Game 4.
Q. I know Rick Celebrini spent All-Star break with you in Cabo. How important has he been for your whole team, and did you know he was a good defender when he was playing soccer back in the day? Have you ever seen his clips or anything like that?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I have seen some clips of Rick playing soccer. Pretty physical. Which is no surprise; that's how he is in his work here. Not necessarily that he's physical, but just the demeanor you carry and the aggression that you carry and the tone that you speak with.
But he's been extremely important to what we've done here in really building out a performance team. I think for us as players you kind of see the different roles, and it's been great to see. Like you see what he's done in the training room with Yoder and Denny and Gerry and Long, and then you also see what he's done in the weight room with Bergie and KB and Dave, AD.
I think he's done an incredible job of just being a leader and building out the way he has, and then obviously he's a genius when it comes to the body and how the body operates. I'm not sure I've ever been around someone that knows more about the body and what, A, you need to get out of your body, but also what you need to do to put yourself in the best position to peak when it's time.
I think that's one of the things I think has been great with Rick is he's taught myself, he's taught Steph, Klay, he's taught us as our career has gone on how to get your body ready to go when it needs to be ready.
That process is different for everyone. That process is different if it's one day in between the game, that process is different if it's a back-to-back, that process is different if you've got two or three days between the games, and I think they've done a great job of helping us understanding that.
Q. I believe tomorrow is the three-year anniversary of Klay's ACL injury. I'm wondering if you could reflect briefly on the emotion of that night --
DRAYMOND GREEN: It's unnecessary. We're here in this moment. There's no need to talk about something that's unfortunate that happened three years ago. We're here in this moment. We're going to stay in this moment. We're going to think positive thoughts and we're going to move forward.
Q. My point was everything he's overcome since then.
DRAYMOND GREEN: Yeah, it's been great to see where he is and the level that he's back playing at. But there's no need for us to talk about moments that we don't want to relive from three years ago.
Q. You see Klay yesterday when he comes back from the jump in the ocean, and he talks about how that refreshes him. What do you do when you get back from a five and a half hour flight to sort of reset yourself before such a big game?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I try to get my body moving after the flight, get a sweat, get some work in and spend time with my family. I think that's it for me.
I think the ocean is very refreshing. I'm not a hop-in-the-ocean in San Francisco or anywhere around San phrase type of person, but I absolutely do love the ocean. It's definitely refreshing.
That's his safe haven, and he enjoys that. It's absolutely great to see him indulging in what he enjoys and what helps him be him.
Q. When you think about the run you guys have been on throughout this whole entire period, your growth particularly, coming into this league and establishing yourself as one of the top defensive players, what was the model? Who was the model you looked at to get to this point, to say, this is the way that I can establish myself as a force? Was there anybody you looked at and modeled your game after?
DRAYMOND GREEN: I think for us as a team, there was no specific model. I think if we looked at anybody who we would more closely compare ourselves to or try to model ourselves after is the San Antonio Spurs but they're completely different in how they went about it. So I don't think there's a direct comparison to us, and I think that's why you see the league has changed now in a way that it never has before. I think that's in large part due to the brand of basketball that we've played and had success with.
I think the model for me, I think for me, I watched a bunch of different guys and what they've brought to the table, but ultimately understanding that there was no guy in particular like me, and that I wanted to try to create a lane for other guys in this league that had not been created before. I think I've done a pretty good job of that.
There was definitely some guys that I took things away from, and over the course of my career I've still continued to watch and try to take things away from those guys. When you look at -- I think for me, I studied Boris Diaw so much early in my career and just how he moved the ball and how he used DHOs and more so than a specific action how he out-thought the opponent, was very special to me.
When I look at myself on the defensive end, I've tried to take things from a lot of guys. I've tried to incorporate some things that Dennis Rodman did to have success, Kurt Thomas and Chuck Hayes and how they were undersized but the way that they guarded on the block, two of the best post defenders at their size that I've ever seen. You couldn't back down either one of those guys. I've tried to add that to my game on that side of the ball, but ultimately understanding that I didn't want to be a carbon copy of anybody. I wanted to come in and make people say, who is the next Draymond, not man, can Draymond be like this guy or -- I didn't want that for me. I didn't think there was a path for me to success, for me to go and try to emulate someone else. I thought my path to success would be based on what I can bring to the table, and if there was something that I could recreate in our situation. So that was kind of the biggest thing for me.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports