Programming note: Watch the pregame edition of Warriors Outsiders tonight at 6 p.m. PT streaming live on the MyTeams app.
At his core, Draymond Green is not a scorer or a shooter. Instead of making a 3-pointer or a floater, he would rather lock a guy up defensively, get the rebound, push the ball down the floor and throw a beautiful backdoor pass for a dunk.
But with the way teams are defending them now, the Warriors need the 2017 NBA Defensive Player of the Year to adjust his mindset a little. When his defender gives him 15 feet of space, Draymond needs to confidently rise up and knock down the open 3.
"We want Draymond to be aggressive -- I hate when he hesitates," Kevin Durant told reporters after practice Wednesday. "I hate when he's looking to pass when he should shoot. I tell him that all the time. That's hard to figure that out as a player -- especially when your game is facilitating and getting everybody involved; when to turn that on and think about yourself.
"It's not selfishness -- it's just that we need that in order for us to be good. It's really unselfishness when you go out there and be the best player that you can be scoring the basketball sometimes."
Draymond is shooting just 22.4 percent from beyond the arc this season and is attempting just 2.3 per game -- his fewest in the Steve Kerr era. He went 0-for-3 from distance vs the Lakers and was clearly impacted by the Lakers' defensive strategy:
This is the air-balled 3-pointer that messed with Draymond's mindset last night (look at Tyson Chandler turn and taunt Draymond) pic.twitter.com/e65rKUX8zp— Drew Shiller (@DrewShiller) December 26, 2018
Because he had already airballed a 3, you can tell Draymond didn't really want to shoot here. But he ends up reluctantly taking the 3 and missing it way short pic.twitter.com/3QZ06AMK2m— Drew Shiller (@DrewShiller) December 26, 2018
The funny thing is -- Draymond used to do this to players considered "non-shooters" and dare them to shoot the open triple. This can mess with somebody's psyche because the "disrespect" can get you a little amped and/or have you overthink things. It is now happening to Draymond.
The Warriors remain confident that he will make teams pay when they leave him wide open.
"Draymond is a guy that we trust and believe that can knock those shots down, and just create something for us," Durant added. "We don't like it when he's just inbetween decisions. I thought I saw that a couple times last night. Misses, turnovers, who cares – we want him to be aggressive."
Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller