Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green has enjoyed a remarkable rise in his career that even he wouldn't have expected in his wildest dreams.
After being selected as the 35th overall pick in the second-round of the 2012 draft, the 26-year-old is reaching heights that you would normally associate with players who are drafted much higher.
Green's success is born out of hard work and perseverance and he is sure to be an influence for any young college player who doesn't have the superstar attributes of a Steph Curry, LeBron James or Kevin Durant.
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In just four years in the league, the Michigan State product is already an NBA champion, All-Star and All-NBA performer. He also came second to Kawhi Leonard in the Defensive Player of the Year voting in two consecutive years and came seventh in the MVP voting.
He is a player who relishes a challenge and takes pride in competing with the best and is one of the most vocal and competitive players in the NBA.
Despite being a major part of one of the best teams in NBA history - the Warriors won a regular season record 73 games - Green is still always looking for ways to improve and learn new things to make himself a better player.
So, where does he draw inspiration from?
“In the NBA there’s always a guy who is only around because he can jump,” Green told Sports Illustrated’s Lee Jenkins in a wide-ranging profile. “He doesn’t have a clue about the fundamentals. I learn more from the WNBA. They know how to dribble, how to pivot, how to use the shot fake.”
It is an interesting perspective from the power forward but not many can question it as he seems to be benefiting from the approach.
Green averaged 14 points and 9.5 rebounds per game for the Warriors this season and was second in the league in triple-doubles with 13, behind Russell Westbrook.
Even though he is on a record-breaking team, the Warriors' defensive lynchpin is always aware of any negativity or criticism that comes his or the team's way.
By his own admission, he pays close attention to what is said in the media and regularly watches sports shows on channels such as ESPN.
Among the countless experts and media members that regularly praise the Bay Area franchise, Green says there are still some who don't give the organisation the credit it deserves. One Charles Barkley immediately springs to mind.
“There are still doubters,” he says. “I’ll find them somewhere.”
Draymond and his teammates are currently in pursuit of a second straight championship and are involved in a tough battle with the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals with the series tied at 1-1.
If the Oakland-based team fails to regain the Larry O'Brien trophy, the doubters will certainly emerge again and be all too keen to state that the Warriors' historic regular season was in vain.
It's up to Golden State's no.23 to ensure their critics remain tight-lipped.