Draymond Green is still bitter about making second team all-defense last year and is making it a point to ensure that doesn’t happen again.
The 28-year-old forward said Wednesday that it’s a big goal of his to win the Defensive Player of the Year award this season and that he thinks about it when he wakes up each morning.
“I need that,” Green told reporters. “I need that bad. Real bad. I made second team All-Defense last year. I’m pissed about that still. I’ll be pissed until I right that, so that’s a serious goal of mine this year. And I’m on it every night.”
He added: “I’m pissed. Second-team All-Defense, that’s disrespectful.”
Green missed several weeks of training camp due to a sore knee but he appears to have returned to form, scoring 16 points with 14 rebounds and eight assists Wednesday in a victory over the Pelicans.
Even though Green battled an injury, his teammates never doubted whether he would make an impact.
“He didn’t change his name, and he’s still Draymond Green, No. 23 for the Warriors,” Stephen Curry said in Wednesday’s postgame press conference. “You never worry about him finding a way to impact the game. [Whether] he’s making or missing shots, whatever, he always gets timely stops.
“He’s talking, an emotional leader, so just like it was with Klay [Thompson] shooting a basketball, you never worry about Draymond getting implemented into an all-around game that helps us get wins. It’s great to see him with a little pep in his step, a little juice and excitement out there. He’s playing well.”
Green has averaged 8.9 points with 7.2 rebounds and 8.1 assists through nine games this season.