Draymond Green: Role ‘Completely Changes’ Without Kevin Durant

by May 30, 2019

Draymond Green says his role “completely changes” whenever Kevin Durant is out of the Warriors’ lineup.

Green adds that he has to be “more of a scoring threat” for Golden State.

Time and again, Draymond has insisted that the Dubs needs KD (who remains out with a strained right calf) in order to beat the Toronto Raptors in the NBA Finals.


“It completely changes,” Green told ESPN’s Rachel Nichols in an interview that will run Thursday on The Jump. “I have to be more of a scoring threat when Kevin’s not out there. I have to — I really try to push the pace more when he’s not out there. When Kevin’s out there, we all have the luxury of just saying, ‘OK, that set didn’t work, we still got this guy to just throw a ball into it and get out of the way.’ That luxury isn’t there anymore, and also I think with Kevin being out, we’re trying to make up 37 points again.”

Durant’s availability for the Finals remains in question as he continues rehabbing the injury.

“We’re not going to make those 37 points again up just by walking the ball up the floor and thinking we’re going to have the same trust running the set as if Kevin is on the floor,” Green said. “So how do you make up those points? Get extra possessions, get the pace to where you want it to be, get some easy buckets. That’s how you make it up.”

In Durant’s absence, Green is playing arguably the best basketball of his career. In 16 postseason games so far this year, Green is averaging 13.6 points, 9.9 rebounds and 8.2 assists per game.

“I wouldn’t necessarily say more fun, but it’s just like anything in life,” Green said. “If you go into something with a little more uncertainty, when you come out of it, it feels a little better. Because you got over the doubt. Whatever doubt it was that you was facing, you got over that. When Kevin’s with us, I walk into the arena and I know how this game is gonna go. I know we’re gonna win and whatever else you wanna add in to that, I know already. When he’s not, I’m still extremely confident that we’re gonna win, I’m still extremely confident that we’re the best team walking in. But you gotta figure a little more out in order to win as opposed to when he out there. And so I think it gives you a little more joy initially when you finish that game.

“So you may have seen us over the course of the last few weeks celebrate the Houston series in the second round a little bit more than we would normally celebrate a second-round series win. You may have seen us celebrate sweeping Portland a little bit more than we would normally celebrate sweeping someone, because it’s a different feeling. You go into those games, and it’s like, ‘Yeah, we’re very confident that we’re gonna win,’ but it’s not as certain as it is when Kevin is with us.”

Related Kevin Durant: ‘Just Not Facts’ That Golden State is Better Without Him