This past Thursday, the Golden State Warriors beat the Boston Celtics 103-90, handing the Warriors their fourth championship in eight years and officially welcoming Steph Curry behind the velvet ropes of the NBA Legends V.V.I.P. Club. Curry is a curious talent, to say the least. Not physically domineering like Giannis Antetokounmpo or Shaquille O’Neal, nor possessing eye-popping athleticism like Lebron James, this unassuming kid from North Carolina has essentially bent offensive basketball to his will through a sheer singular talent. Not unlike Tiger Woods in golf. Or Wayne Gretzky in hockey. Or Aaron Rodgers in football. Talent so unique, so unquestionable, that it transforms the very way the sport in which these gentlemen ply their trade is played. Yes, after last Thursday, there is no denying Steph Curry is one of the all-time greats in NBA history. And, he wouldn’t have a single championship if it wasn’t for Draymond Green. If Green Bay wants to earn their fifth championship ring in 2022, the Packers need to find their Draymond Green.
Draymond Green is outspoken. He is irascible. He is a firebrand. A prick. An asshole. He also owns four championship rings. While Steph Curry was getting endless (and well-deserved) pats on the back over the last few weeks for his play on the court, Draymond was busy executing his mental Tet Offensive off the court. While Green’s stats throughout the NBA Finals were pedestrian at best (he averaged a workmanlike 8 points and 8 rebounds per game), it was his byzantine mind games and his chaos agent approach off the court that derailed Boston as much as anything Curry was doing on the hardwood. Whether it was podcasting directly after games, openly criticizing the Celtics offensive gameplans in his postgame press conferences, or operating a borderline dirty style of defensive play throughout the entirety of the NBA finals, there is no doubt that the shiny new trophy the Warriors just got handed by Adam Silver has Green’s fingerprints all over it.
Green is a throwback to a rougher, and arguably better time in sports. In the 80’s, Green would have been icing bruises and puffing cigars with Bill Laimbeer. In the 90’s, he would have been blowing off media obligations to hang out with Hulk Hogan and be shrink wrapped in tattoos like Robert De Niro in Cape Fear. McEnroe. Rodman. Tai Domi. Bobby Jones. Nolan Ryan. Guys who showed up to the stadium for a fight, and didn’t mind if a game happened to break out while they were there. This is Draymond Green’s fraternity. Call it salty. Call it violent. Call it old school. I call it effective.
What does all this have to do with the Green Bay Packers? Listen, we already have our Stephen Curry. The similarities between Curry and Rodgers, on and off their respective fields of play, are vast. The Packers also have their Andrew Wiggins and Klay Thompson too. The one thing Green Bay has been missing in the last 3 playoff collapses is a jerk. Someone who knows how to gain leverage before the ball is even snapped. Someone who, on a losing team would be called a cancer, but on a winning team is called a difference maker. Five years ago, that would have been Marcedes Lewis’ job. A decade ago, this was Clay Matthews stock and trade. During the 1996 Super Bowl run, Andre Rison happily filled this role. And, if the Packers want to be sporting jewelry like the Golden State Warriors just earned, they are going to need to find their own a-hole, and they are going to need to find him soon.
This Packer team enters the 2022 season at a disadvantage that the previous three iterations of Matt LaFleur club didn’t have to circumvent–and it’s not just the absence of Davante Adams. The Packers are set to field one of the worst receiver groups in the NFL. Their best tight end is recovering from an ACL injury. And their offensive line is starting to resemble the group of soldiers at the end of Black Hawk Down. You know who else entered their most recent season ravaged by injuries? The Golden State Warriors.
Having Steph Curry makes the Golden State Warriors a threat every time they take the court. Just like having Aaron Rodgers under center pretty much guarantees the Packers the NFC North title until further notice. Making the playoffs is like holding hands on a second date. It’s time for the Packers to exit the playoff friend zone and put the metaphorical ball into the metaphorical end zone. And, to do that, we need to find a goon to call our own. As Sean Connery so succinctly put it in The Rock–Losers always whine about their best. Winners go home and fornicate with the prom queen. Hazel Renee is Draymond Green’s longtime girlfriend. And, yes, she was a prom queen.
Timothy Preece has been a Packers fan since 1991 and currently lives in Utah because he makes bad decisions.
You can follow him on twitter at @LegitimateTimP.