What do you know about Golden State Warriors selected him with their #35 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft -- behind such luminaries like , , , , , , , , , , , , , , and Jae Crowder. What do you know about him, besides the fact that the Michigan State product wasn't even on the NBA.com mock draft, and was a bubble first rounder according to the other, dedicated draft sites? What do you know about him, beyond the fact that as a rookie he played a little more than one quarter a night and finished with averages of 2.9 ppg, 3.3 rpg, and 0.7 apg while shooting .327 / .209 / .818?? You know, besides the normal stuff like how the
Looking in hindsight we didn't no much back then. But today we know a lot more about the NBA Champion. This season he has put the entire league on notice -- he's not just a big mouth on a great team. He's probably the most important player on arguably the greatest team, ever. He has played in 73 games for his club this year, and the 26 year old fourth-year player (young legs) has racked up 31 double-doubles, and 12 triple-doubles. And he has been an absolute beast over the last few games.
When you break down the data from Basketball-Reference.com it's clear that over the last five games he has been giving the other team 16.60 ppg, 11.00 rpg, 8.00 apg, 2.00 bpg, and 1.80 spg. These numbers, from some random second round pick on a team that already has (#1, 2005), (#4, 2004), (#7, 2009), (#7, 2012), (#9, 2004), and (#11, 2011) is outright frightening.
For the season his passing numbers aren't just superior to that of our own point guards, but as their starting power forward they surpass the guards on his own team as well. His ability to step out and hit threes -- right now making more than half of his takes -- allows for floor spacing to be both an opening and a threat. Most frustrating is how this 6'7 guy muscles other players, beats them for lose balls, gets his team extra possessions, and is almost always the first guy to drive on the floor.
There are no three and d, tweener, point-forward, energy guys out there . . . who average 14 / 10 / 8 / 2 / 1 for the season, except Draymond. There are no players like him. He's more unique in the history of the game than first ballot Hall of Famers like Yao Ming (a 7'6 man from China) or (the first bigman who could rebound and score from everywhere on the court).
He represents the next shift in what GMs want. In a way there are other guys who can replicate some of what he does . . . one of them is, who as fate would have it was drafted by the Golden State Warriors as well.
Green represents an all-game miss-match. He's the most Utah Jazz tonight.type player ever to exist. And while he talks to the media a lot, and while he is generally annoying -- he has earned the right to be. He's great. He's frustratingly great. And he's going to be a problem for the
Last season he only averaged 12 / 5 / 4 while his team romped to a +23 with him on the floor in their three wins and one loss. This season those numbers have risen to 17 / 9 / 6 in three games (all wins), where he's a +30 on the floor.
Tonight is important for both teams, Golden State (if they admit it or not) is chasing 72+ wins; and Utah is fighting for their playoff lives. If the Jazz are to prevail they will have to find a way to neutralize Mr. Impossible. Dray has been just that this season with his impossible skill-set and high level of productivity.