Having played four years at Michigan State, Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green left in 2012 as a legend at his alma mater. So it’s almost hard to believe that he almost left the Spartans before his career could really begin.
Speaking to ESPN, Draymond’s former high school coach Bruce Simmons revealed that he had considered transferring during his freshman year. Simmons explained that Draymond was displeased with his minutes as a freshman.
“He called and said, ‘Coach Bruce, I’m going to transfer. F— this s—.'”
Encouraging his former pupil to stay at Tom Izzo’s side, Simmons recommended that he instead channel his frustration into challenging his teammates and the legendary Michigan State coach. The advise Simmons gave Draymond included staring down his coach and talking smack to the teammate who was getting the minutes.
“…And I said, ‘Noooo. We don’t do that. This is what you’re going to do. You’re going to go into practice. [Senior] Marquise Gray is getting your minutes. Bust his ass. Talk s— to him. And then when you’re doing that, look at Izzo, because Izzo is putting this [guy] on the court instead of you.'”
He ultimately stayed, and within a year was a consistent presence on the court for the Spartans.
I love the advice from Draymond’s high school coach. Draymond wanted to transfer. Instead, he told Draymond to bust his teammate’s ass, talk shit to his teammate and then stare down his Hall of Fame coach. And it worked. https://t.co/fScaOgIqRq pic.twitter.com/DvGSQyXqeh
— Jay King (@ByJayKing) June 4, 2019
Draymond ultimately rewarded Michigan State with three straight All-Big Ten selections, a consensus All-American selection, and one of the best regular seasons in school history.
In 2012, Draymond helped lead Michigan State to the Big Ten regular season and tournament titles, the first time they had won both titles in the same year since 2000. The Spartans were ultimately upset by the Louisville Cardinals in the Sweet 16.
Since going to the Golden State Warriors in the second round of the 2012 NBA Draft, Draymond has been a key part of the team’s dynasty.
It looks like things worked out pretty well for him in the end.