Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green is half-player, half-GM on his podcast. Of all the active players assessing the NBA, Green is probably the most forthcoming and transparent. Four rings will do that for you, evidently — give you a place to speak from where you don’t have to watch out for your own business. Because that business is going just fine.
So when Green talks, he gives fans real insight into how various NBA moves and NBA players are perceived around the 30 NBA locker rooms. And when it comes to what the Los Angeles Lakers are doing, Green — as a close friend and business partner of Lakers leader LeBron James — has even bigger credibility that usual.
Here’s what Green said — in his GM role — about the Lakers biggest move so far this year, sending Kendrick Nunn to Washington for Rui Hachimura.
“The Rui trade is very good for the Lakers,” Green said, “because any time you can get length and athleticism, it’s always helpful. Rui can defend multiple positions, and Rui can stretch the floor and knock the three down.” That’s the player assessment — very positive. How about the chemistry?
Green thinks the trade takes care of a “logjam” problem the Lakers had.
“Because the Lakers kind of have a logjam right there in the point guard spot,” Green said, “with Dennis [Schröder], Beverley… It just wasn’t working out for Kendrick Nunn.” Russell Westbrook has also been known to play some point guard for the Lakers — and so does James, despite his listing as a forward.
But Green thinks Nunn will find new life in Washington, saying he thinks “Kendrick Nunn is going to go to Washington and rediscover the Kendrick Nunn that we saw in Miami.” That Nunn was a big factor, averaging double figures, in Miami’s trip to the NBA Finals in 2020, where they lost to James and the Lakers.
Magic Johnson — another guy with Lakers insight — agrees with Green, also believing the Lakers won the trade.
I like the Lakers trade for Rui Hachimura. He’s long, athletic, and smart but has to get more aggressive on both ends of the court.— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) January 23, 2023