Draymond Green is doing everything in his power to avoid picking up his seventh technical foul of the NBA Playoffs.
Currently sitting at four, Green’s seventh would automatically warrant him a one-game suspension. To avoid picking up more technical fouls, Green has been practicing keeping his cool in practice with assistant coaches, who try to do anything to purposely push Green over the edge.
But despite his recent campaign to lay off the referees and opposing players, Green is still notoriously known around the league and among basketball fans and analysts as one of basketball’s most competitive and fierce players.
When talking to Sports Illustrated’s Lee Jenkins about growing up in Saginaw, Michigan, Green explained that he sometimes had to fight for an opportunity to play on his local court against grown men who would bully him.
Below is a brief excerpt from Jenkins’ story:
Green is suddenly transported to the Civitan Rec Center in Saginaw, Mich., once again the pudgy kid with the Ben Wallace Afro ignored by the older boys every time he chirped “Next!” He’d sit down in the middle of the court and scream, “Who do you think you are? I’m not leaving this floor for you!” Regulars alternated between sticking him in trash cans, rolling him in rugs, setting him on the rim, and banishing him to the pool table. He hurled billiard balls at his tormentors. “There were grown men trying to fight me,” Green says, “and I fought them all.” He fought anybody who messed with him and anybody who messed with his more reserved older brother, Torrian. Every other day, it seemed, a manager named Tyrone Davis had to kick him out of Civitan. Draymond would occasionally leave with a busted nose, as well as a game ball, which he would boot over the nearest fence.
Perhaps this is where Green’s notable competitive spirit comes from.