Draymond Green: Underestimating my influence costly for Hawks

ByChris Haynes ESPN logo
Tuesday, March 7, 2017

ATLANTA -- Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green may be a two-time All-Star and leading Defensive Player of the Year candidate, but he apparently isn't good enough to warrant game planning by opponents.

Before the Warriors and Atlanta Hawks tipped off on Monday night, Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said he does have to devise a game plan for Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, but not Green.

After the Warriors swept the season series by defeating the Hawks 119-111, Green told ESPN how he felt about Budenholzer's comments.

"And that's exactly why they can't beat us," Green said. "That's exactly why they won't. Don't game plan for me."

Green, the Warriors' best playmaker, registered 12 points, eight rebounds and six assists. Golden State now has beaten Atlanta five consecutive times.

In the pregame news conference, Budenholzer was asked how he schemes and plans for Green. His response was, "He's a unique player. He's so unique, but I don't know that he's the guy that you game plan for. He does things just kind of so much on instinct intuitively, defensively, and rebounding and passing.

"You know, I think can you make it harder on him as a passer, can you make it more difficult for him to get the assists? And defensively, it doesn't matter, you have to take care of the ball every night. He's good [with] instincts and all those things, but game plan -- Curry and Thompson are the guys, and he's great at finding them and creating opportunities for them. So he's a big part of their group."

Last year in March against the Hawks, Green hit a clutch off-balance 3-pointer with 40.2 seconds remaining in overtime to seal a 109-105 victory. He finished with 15 points, 13 rebounds, nine assists, four steals and a block.

Game plan or no game plan, Green said he's not going to change anything.

"I'm just going to keep playing my game," Green said.

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