The Golden State Warriors offence was already tearing up the NBA this season, and that was before Draymond Green got his shot back on track.
One of the minor stories of the Warriors hot start was Green’s struggles from the field. After shooting career-highs of 49% from the field and 38% from three-point range last year, Green shot just 42% from the field and 29% from three through November.
After a similarly sluggish start to December, Green has suddenly found his rhythm, hitting 12 of his last 20 three-point attempts while averaging 15 points per game.
According to Green, the improvement came after Warriors defensive assistant Ron Adams noted that Green was falling back on his shot attempts. Green recently spoke to reporters, explaining that during practice, Adams came behind him and put his hand on his back, forcing Green to keep his back straight while shooting (via Anthony Slater of the Mercury News).
“One day, it felt weird, which was kind of a microcosm of what I was doing wrong. [Adams] told me, like, ‘Yo, you’re falling back on every one of your shots,’ and all of them were coming up short, and it just felt awful. And so he told me and I tried to focus in on it.
“And then, I think the next day, he came behind me and I was shooting, and he literally stood there and put his hand on my back. I’m like, ‘Whoa, this feels weird.’ But it felt so weird because I was falling back every shot. And so, that’s really helped a lot, just staying in my shot, moving forward. It’s helped my arc out a lot, which is important when shooting the basketball.”
Warriors coach Steve Kerr told Slater, “It feels like every time Draymond hits a few threes, we’re unbeatable.”
It’s bad news for the rest of the league. The Warriors are already scoring 114 points per 100 possessions (second in the NBA) with Green in a slump for most of the season. Now, defences can’t lay off Green to cover other threats, like Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry, and Klay Thompson.
In fact, Green recently said that he heard Utah Jazz coach Quin Snyder telling players to grant Green open shots, the safest of options when defending the Warriors. Green said it motivated him, and he made the Jazz pay, scoring 13 points on 4-of-6 shooting from beyond the arc.
If Green begins knocking down shots at a 38% clip or better again, the Warriors are going to be making things even tougher on opponents this year.
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