Draymond Green says he wasn’t sure Warriors would win title

After the missing the playoffs in consecutive season, the Golden State Warriors returned to the top, winning their fourth title in eight years. What ensued was a revenge tour from players, pulling receipts out from every possible corner and calling out the many people who doubted the team’s ability to return to championship form.

On an episode of “The Draymond Green Show” released Thursday morning, the forward recounted the uncertainty he felt as the Dubs’ injuries mounted.

“The day [Klay] comes back I go down,” Green said. “The day I come back, Steph goes down. It’s like, I started to think, ‘This ain’t supposed to happen for us. It’s not the year.’ I even told one of my homeboys like, ‘I’ma probably see you right after the first round because I just don’t see it happening for us.’”

The Warriors’ path to the Finals required them to get through the Nuggets, Grizzlies and Mavericks, who they defeated in five, six and five games respectively. After facing a 2-1 deficit, the Dubs then beat the Celtics in six games to claim the title. And while a playoff run vacant of a seven-game series doesn’t sound like the most daunting thing in the world, it was enough to make the four-time All-Star skeptical.

“The first championship we won, after that regular season, I knew like, ‘Yo, we got the best team,’ but we didn’t know how to win a championship,” Green said. “2017 and 2018, it was literally just a matter of getting to the day that we could win. Once we got to that date, I knew we could win. This year was different.”

With Kevin Durant suiting up in the blue and yellow threads, the Warriors took home the title after just 17 games in the 2017 playoffs and 21 games the following year. Both Finals runs concluded in easy wins over the Cavaliers, one of which was a sweep.

Draymond wasn’t the only Warrior to cast doubt on the team’s championship aspirations. An up and down regular season even left Steve Kerr unsure of what the playoffs would hold.

“When we started camp, I thought we could be pretty good but I didn’t know we could win the whole thing,” Kerr said during the title parade.

In a post-Finals press conference, general manager Bob Myers recalled a conversation he had during the playoffs with the head coach.

“Steve said to me at one point, he goes, ‘You know, I don’t know if this is a championship team,’” Myers said. “’We know what a championship team is, I don’t know if this is a championship team.’” Myers hinted during the press conference that he competed with Kerr’s thoughts.

Nevertheless, the Warriors returned to the Finals after a two-year absence, ending the season as NBA champions. When adversity inevitably hits in the title defense, perhaps the stunning 2022 run will prevent doubt from seeing in.

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