Kevin Durant’s epic Game 5 stat line performance of 49 points, 17 rebounds and 10 assists will command NBA storylines for the next 48 hours and beyond if the Nets go on to win the NBA title.
But there’s also Jeff Green, who helped the Nets pull out a huge win to take the lead in the second-round series 3-2.
Jeff Green set a Nets’ franchise record scoring 27 points off the bench—the most points by a player off the bench since Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot dropped 26 in 2020 and Caris LeVert also had 2016 the year before.
With performances like this while playing his most efficient basketball of his career, one would believe that Jeff would be in the team’s plans next year right?
History teaches that it’s not a guarantee for Jeff Green. The Nets currently are the 10th team Green has played for since he was drafted by the Seattle Sonics in 2007. He’s two teams shy of the record shared by Chucky Brown, Jim Jackson, Tony Massenburg and Joe Smith.
Despite being productive for much of his career, he has not cashed in on long-term deals. He’s played with seven of his 10 teams since the 2014-15 season. His last five contracts with the Nets, Houston Rockets, Utah Jazz, Washington Wizards, and Cleveland Cavaliers being one year veteran’s minimum deals. One of those was a 10-day contract with the Rockets.
The consistent level of play that outperforms contracts confuses many around the NBA, including Green himself.
“It confuses me, but it isn’t frustrating,” Green told the New York Times. “You know, this stuff, that’s out of my control. I go out and just do the work. And I let my agent handle the logistics of the contract terms, but it is confusing to the point of, ‘What else do I need to do to prove that I’m not a minimum guy?’”
Green also expressed his desires to stay with Brooklyn after this year.
“I’d love to settle down in one place,” he added. “There’s Brooklyn. I’d love to settle down in Brooklyn. I’m not too concerned with the NBA record or how many teams. When you think about it, if I was to play 22 years, played on 15 teams, what does that say? It has no teeth behind it.”
Still, one thing he makes clear is that, regardless of what team he plays for, he’s ready to continue competing.
Uncle Jeff Green Appreciation Post pic.twitter.com/rwUdwLErHl— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) June 16, 2021