PHOENIX SUNS

Draymond Green ‘baffled’ by James Jones’ claim on Kevin Durant not being maximized

May 3, 2024, 8:53 PM

NBA players Kevin Durant (L) and Draymond Green attend a 2023 FIBA World Cup exhibition game betwee...

NBA players Kevin Durant (L) and Draymond Green attend a 2023 FIBA World Cup exhibition game between Puerto Rico and the United States at T-Mobile Arena on August 07, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green has always been opinionated and with his own podcast he now has a 24/7, 365 outlet to share them.

Green heard what Phoenix Suns general manager James Jones had to say at Phoenix’s end-of-season availability on Wednesday in regards to Kevin Durant. Jones was asked about the recent report from The Athletic on Durant not being content with his role and Jones went on to say he doesn’t feel like Durant has ever been maximized by a team before. He wants the Suns to be the first.

As you can imagine, the teammate who saw Durant win two NBA Finals MVP awards would disagree with that.

Green claims this was Jones being a “true leader,” someone who is very well respected for that and was trying to deflect some of the blame away from Durant.

“But sometimes when we go down those rabbit holes we go a little too far and we exaggerate things a little bit too much,” Green said.

Green takes some light shots at Jones during his take, noting how Jones’ Miami Heat faced Golden State in the 2017 NBA Finals Durant went off in and how Jones was “sitting there on the bench, getting in the game every now and then to see if he can hit a 3.”

Green brought up the lack of offensive sets he’s seen Phoenix run for Durant that he prefers before stating the Warriors certainly maximized Durant. He made good points on Golden State setting up Durant in a position where he didn’t have to be a leader beyond leading by example.

“He didn’t have the burden of, ‘I need to lead this team from every single day all aspects’ ever in Golden State,” Green said. “When he was with us, that was not a thing. He did not have the role of, ‘I need to get these other guys involved.’ No. None of that. You know what he did? Score. … That is maximizing Kevin Durant.”

Green asked for a comparison between Durant’s more consistent defense with the Warriors as opposed to how he defended for Phoenix this year. He also criticizes Phoenix for not having a point guard.

“I’m going to give James Jones a little word of advice: You want to maximize Kevin Durant? Go get him a point guard,” Green said. “You want to maximize Kevin Durant? Put him in positions to score. You want to maximize Kevin Durant? Take some of the other weight off his shoulders. But until you do that, you will be singing this same tune that nobody maximized Kevin Durant because y’all didn’t and that’s just the case and that is a lie and no. That is not how we’re rolling, because nah.”

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Draymond Green ‘baffled’ by James Jones’ claim on Kevin Durant not being maximized