Since the NBA playoffs began on Saturday, I thought it might be fun to track how our Spartans are faring at the next level. Fair warning: as the title suggests, I'll be focusing on Draymond Green just because of my own personal affinity. But I'll absolutely try to give some shouts to Zach Randolph and Alan Anderson as well.
Just to catch you up on Draymond if you haven't been paying attention: he's good. Like, really good. To be more specific, Draymond has turned a corner this season after being inserted into the starting lineup for an injured David Lee. Draymond's team, the Golden State Warriors, boasted the best record in the NBA by a full 7 games. Their 67 total wins puts them in a tie for the sixth highest regular-season winning percentage in NBA history. Box plus-minus calls Draymond the second-best player for this historic team, after likely MVP Stephen Curry. Win shares calls him the third best.
Grantland basically can't stop churning out pro-Draymond content. Zach Lowe named Draymond his defensive player of the year. Kirk Goldsberry (former MSU assistant professor) chronicled Draymond's rise earlier in the year. Andrew Sharp told us why we should love Day-Day like a family member (you don't need to tell us, Andrew). Jonathan Abrams gave us even more Draymond backstory, including his famous (infamous?) mouth.
One last thing: Draymond was heinously underrated when he finished his MSU career. Per the table below (courtesy Basketball-Reference), Draymond has contributed the fourth-most career win shares from the 2012 class. That means that he's been more valuable than 31 of the 34 guys drafted ahead of him, including teammate Harrison Barnes.
In game one of their first round series against the New Orleans Pelicans, Draymond did Draymond things. He posted a 15-12-7-3-2 points-rebounds-assists-steals-blocks statline, and checked in at +7 on the game.
To be honest, I was unable to watch Game 1 due to the MSU Day of Service, but Game 2 is Monday night on TNT at 10:30 ET and I plan to tune in to cheer on Day-Day, at least until I fall asleep.
Oh, and by the way, Draymond is a free agent this summer, and the Detroit Pistons may give him an offer he can't refuse. He'd be a nice fit next to Andre Drummond, and I don't know about you, but I'd buy a Green Pistons jersey in a heartbeat.
Zach Randolph has had a nice bounce-back year for Memphis, who beat Portland in Game 1. I'm rooting hard for Memphis, as a Z-Bo/Draymond Round 2 matchup would be great.
Alan Anderson played in his Game 1 for the Brooklyn Nets (a loss), despite a minor injury. He should be full go the rest of the series against Atlanta, and that's good news for the Nets who need as much help as they can get.