2019 NBA Free Agents: Danny Green
Chris Young/AP Photo
After winning a championship in 2015 with the San Antonio Spurs, Danny Green had three straight lackluster seasons where he wasn’t playing like his previous self. Traded alongside Kawhi Leonard, Green got a fresh start in Toronto and once again became one of the elite 3-and-D players in the league.
Regular Season Stats: 10.3 points, 4.0 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 0.9 steals, 0.7 blocks, and 0.9 turnovers on 46.5 FG%, 45.5 3PFG%, and 84.1 FT%.
Postseason Stats: 6.9 points, 3.6 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 1.3 steals, 0.5 blocks, 1.1 turnovers on 34.2 FG%, 32.8 3PFG%, and 91.3 FT%.
Green was the embodiment of a modern 3-and-D guard during the regular season, wreaking havoc on the defensive end while exclusively looking for good shots on offense. Green’s shooting efficiency particularly stood out, scoring at a clip of 1.27 points per shot attempt, per Cleaning the Glass. He had a ridiculously good 62.6 EFG% despite launching 5.4 three-pointers per game, a true testament of how Green perfectly knows his role and takes mostly good shots. His 103.7 defensive rating and 13.1 net rating confirm what the eye test suggested, having Green on the court most always yielded very positive results. His championship DNA and playoff experience are the sort of intangibles some teams are desperate of acquiring, especially the younger teams like the Philadelphia 76ers and Denver Nuggets.
Outside of great defense and three-point shooting, Green doesn’t give you that much more. He is not outstanding at driving to the rim or a second scoring option whatsoever, and his production usually depends on how his team uses him and on the system he plays in. Also, his playoff stats – and the regular season efficiency we so much applauded – took a big hit this year. He did remind us of how dangerous he is with his 18-point outburst in Game 3 of the 2019 NBA Finals, but he is not someone you can consistently rely on for scoring. At 32 years of age, his athleticism doesn’t make him stand out compared to other two-guards.
Just like he did this past season with Toronto, Green should be paired with at least two more solid offensive options that can draw enough attention for him to capitalize and take open perimeter shots. This man shot 51.3% on wide-open threes in the regular season, per NBA stats, so giving him space at the three-point line is a recipe for disaster. An A-level playmaker would be a perfect teammate for Green too, as the two-time NBA champion likes running around screens and getting some free space with backdoor cuts. He can comfortably guard the opposition’s best perimeter player, so he won’t struggle teaming up with a couple of average to above-average defenders.
Possible Landing Spots:
Toronto Raptors: Their cap situation is not ideal at all, but they do hold his Bird Rights after trading for him this past summer. If Green wants to remain competitive and try to win another championship for Canada, he might even take a small discount to stay.
Los Angeles Lakers: There are so many rumors about the Lakers desperately trying to add a third big name to pair with LeBron James after trading for Anthony Davis this past week, but do not dismiss the possibility of L.A. using their cap space on impactful role players. Green looks like a perfect fit alongside James and Davis, and the Lakers’ cap situation and talented roster gives them an enticing pitch for Green.
Milwaukee Bucks: If Toronto is unable to pay him enough to stay, and assuming the Bucks miss out on Khris Middleton, Milwaukee and Green make sense for one another. The Bucks give Green a chance to remain competitive in the wide-open Eastern Conference race; the team adds another great shooter that complements Giannis Antetokounmpo’s style of play. A lot of factors would play into this scenario, but it isn’t entirely out of the picture.
Expected Next Contract:
Green is well worth double-figures as a premier 3-and-D talent in the league, and I think his market will revolve around a yearly paycheck of $9 to $12 million. Depending on where he chooses to go and the length of his contract, he could get more or less money per year. But if I had to make an educated guess, I’d say Green signs a 2-year, $22 million deal with a player option in the second season.