Golden State Warriors

Draymond Green on Hawks’ Trae Young: ‘If you don’t take your hat off to him, you’re a hater’

There’s a definite trend in the NBA when the Golden State Warriors miss the playoffs. Put simply, that trend is Draymond Green.

Everyone wants to know what the Warriors forward has to say about nearly anything, especially NBA basketball. Green appeared as a guest on NBA on TNT for three nights, and as if that wasn’t enough, he took part in an interactive interview with Bleacher Report, touching on a variety of topics.

One such topic was Hawks guard Trae Young. His name came up when Green was asked if there’s a better talker on the court than Green. Here’s what Golden State’s three-time NBA champion said in response.

“Better? No. Is there anyone that talks more than me? Yes, but better absolutely not. Trae Young talks more than me. It’s incredible what he’s doing. I did not enjoy watching Trae Young play basketball the last two years, but I enjoy watching Trae Young play basketball this year. Just to watch his growth, has been amazing. If you don’t take your hat off to him, you’re just a hater.” — Draymond Green

Bleacher Report

Okay, so apparently, Young talks a lot. He’s young, so perhaps he’ll gain on quality smack talk as he grows older.

He’s got plenty to squawk about, with his Hawks beating the Knicks in the first round of the NBA playoffs. Most interesting to me is the combination of Green admitting he didn’t like watching Young in the past, but does now, and he says if you don’t like watching him, you’re a hater.

So Green used to be a hater? Not sure about that one.

But the part of Green’s comment about “hating” hit me on a personal level, I’ve got to say. Like most basketball junkies, I noticed Young in college at Oklahoma. It was clear he had the potential to be a similar player to Warriors superstar guard Stephen Curry. I loved watching him whenever I could.

Now, however, with Curry well over 30 years of age and a bevy of young players rising in the ranks, watching Young hits a bit different. I don’t like watching the “next Steph” nearly as much when it’s clear that the first Steph is in the second half of his career.

It’s clear that Young is a special talent, however. One aspect of his game that’s well known but still underrated is his ability to draw fouls. Young’s favorite player growing up was Suns G Chris Paul, and he watched and learned how to create contact from one of the best. In fact, he’s much more adept than Curry in that regard.

See? I’m not a total hater. I’ll continue to tell myself that — while I struggle to take my hat off to the young talent in the league, as the Warriors attempt to hold them off as best as they can and win another NBA title.

(Photo courtesy Wikipedia commons/Flickr/Alexander Jonesi)

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