Draymond Green shows why he is the Defensive Player of the Year

Mar 8, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) celebrates after a basket against the Boston Celtics during the fourth quarter at Oracle Arena. The Boston Celtics defeated the Golden State Warriors 99-86. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 8, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) celebrates after a basket against the Boston Celtics during the fourth quarter at Oracle Arena. The Boston Celtics defeated the Golden State Warriors 99-86. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Golden State Warriors mounted a comeback against the 76ers that was started by Draymond Green’s defense. He is the Defensive Player of the Year.

Draymond Green should have, at least, one Defensive Player of the Year award. He could reasonably have two, considering that his “least” deserving campaign saw him earn more first place votes than anyone else. He should win it this year.

Green is, once again, locked in a two horse race that is headed for a photo finish. Instead of Kawhi Leonard–who still remains one of the best defensive players ever–he is going head-to-head with Utah’s Rudy Gobert. For many, it’s a toss up.

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Gobert is deserving. He’s been an absolute monster on that end of the floor. He leads the league in blocks per game (2.5) and is anchoring the team with the third best defensive rating in the NBA.

Green deserves it more. He’s been even more phenomenal on the defensive side of things. He should be awarded for it.

He leads the leagues in steals per game (2.1) and defensive box plus/minus (5.0). He averages 1.4 blocks per game. He also leads the team with the second best defensive rating in the entire Association.

Draymond Green had another signature game against the Philadelphia 76ers. He had 20 points, but it was his work on the other side that was special. He grabbed five defensive rebounds, had four steals, and blocked six shots.

Green’s effort on that end can’t be quantified though. The Warriors were in a free fall. They had fallen behind by 15 points to the lowly Sixers without their best player.

He turned up the defensive intensity and changed the game. There are very few players in the entire league that can dominate on the defensive end so much that it jump starts an entire team. That’s what he did.

Green just flipped the switch and saved the Warriors’ reeling defense. He energized Golden State and even helped get Steph Curry going as the team mounted its comeback. It was spectacular as he defended everyone everywhere.

The All-Star has had 10 games with at least 4 steals, including a 10 steal night against the Memphis Grizzlies. He’s had six games with 3 blocks, three games with 4 blocks, two games with 5 blocks, and one game with 6 blocks.

Green can defend everyone on a court. He can switch out onto guards and pick up much larger centers. He knows how to gain the advantage in every situation, despite being undersized for his position and slower than speedy wings.

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The Warriors’ power forward has saved multiple games with huge defensive stops. He had a great block against the Sixers late in the fourth quarter. He also stopped Dennis Giannis Antetokounmpo, Schröeder, and Anthony Davis on different occasions to preserve the win for Golden State.

Draymond Green should be this year’s Defensive Player of the Year. Gobert has been fantastic and Leonard is amazing, but Green has the edge. His signature performances, game-saving heroics, and transcendent dominance makes him the top defender this season.