Originally posted on Project Spurs  |  Last updated 6/14/13
If you’ve followed the NBA Finals from the San Antonio Spurs’ side closely, you will have no doubt read more than a few articles about Manu Ginobili not quite being the same Manu we’ve normally seen, aside from a few bright spots in Game 3. You’ve also likely read quite a bit about Danny Green and his emergence from a guy that couldn’t stick on a team to Finals hero. There seems to be a bit of a shift happening with the Spurs. While Green will never replace Ginobili, and while he was named a starter, that’s always been due to Spurs coach Gregg Popovich’s strategy of having a strong player come off the bench with the second unit. Green, however, seems to be shedding the image of passable defender and inconsistent shooter. This playoff run, and especially the Finals, have likely rid Green of the nickname “IcyHot” that had been affixed to him by other members of the blogosphere and local media. Green’s performance this postseason is a far cry from his disappearing act against the Oklahoma City Thunder in last season’s Western Conference Finals. Inconsistency? Not for the Spurs-leading scorer in the NBA Finals, who has scored in double figures in the first four games of the series. Aside from that, he is shooting at a 57 percent clip from the field and nearly 70 percent from beyond the arch. After seeing him defend both Dwyane Wade and LeBron James, I think it’s fair to call him an above-average defender. Green has been teaming up with Kawhi Leonard to form a tight first line of defense around the perimeter, but Green has done work in the post as well, knocking away a few shots and averaging 1.2 blocks and one steal per game. This is all new to Green. While he was successful at North Carolina, he was never the type to take over a game and played mostly as a complimentary piece. You’ve read John Karalis’ excellent story on Green’s journey and while he is opening eyes around the league, he also seems to be enjoying new experiences. Like walking into an interview room packed with reporters. Green’s first words to the media were “what’s up.” If he continues on his pace and the Spurs win this series, he won’t just be on the podium answering questions, he may be stepping up to accept a Finals MVP trophy. Players are made in the NBA Finals, and while many would expect Parker, Duncan and Ginobili to be starring in this series, Parker is fighting injury, Ginobili has been mostly inconsistent and Duncan’s has been best on defense. While it would be a tough task to expect Green to ever be a player of Ginobili’s caliber, especially on offense, he’s already proven to be a difference maker on both ends of the floor. Green is also still young, with plenty of time to learn and grow, and there’s nothing like the NBA Finals to spur that. With Green looking like a big part of the Spurs’ future, the changeover won’t be instant, but it’s definitely already in process.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

MotoGP qualifying for the Dutch Grand Prix saw three frightening crashes Saturday

Report: Knicks attempted to move Joakim Noah with Kristaps Porzingis

Hornets GM mistakenly introduces Dwayne Bacon as Dwyane Wade

Three A's players knock first MLB homers in the same game

Cuban-American businessman emerges as potential Marlins buyer

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Charles Oakley: Kristaps Porzingis was ‘wrong’ to skip exit meeting

Sixers already looking to extend Joel Embiid

WATCH: Klay Thompson fails miserably attempting a 360 dunk

Jays closer Roberto Osuna says he’s dealing with anxiety

John McEnroe claims Andy Warhol ruined his sex life

Report: Re-signing Nerlens Noel is Mavericks' top priority

Best of Yardbarker: Diana Taurasi makes history

The 'Finest running back from America’s Finest City' quiz

Players who need to turn around their season to save their teams

Sports & Politics Intersect: Washington gets a rare win

Three Up, Three Down: Flouting the written and unwritten rules of baseball

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Billy King Award for worst trade

Kicking it: David Villa isn't interested in a 'retirement tour'

Box Score 6/23: Philly continues to trust the process

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Feeding your roundball addiction through the summer months

The 'NBA Draft going back to school?' quiz

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Gary Payton Award for best trash talk of the year

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Diana Taurasi makes history

The 'Finest running back from America’s Finest City' quiz

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Billy King Award for worst trade

Players who need to turn around their season to save their teams

Three Up, Three Down: Flouting the written and unwritten rules of baseball

Sports & Politics Intersect: Washington gets a rare win

Kicking it: David Villa isn't interested in a 'retirement tour'

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Feeding your roundball addiction through the summer months

The 'NBA Draft going back to school?' quiz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker