My reporting on the Golden State Warriors goes back more than six years — to an era when the team was practically begging writers to cover them. In the spring of 2011, I wrote a long piece for Wired on how their new ownership group (led by former Silicon Valley venture capitalist Joe Lacob) was embracing science and emerging technology to try and pull the team from its historic, years-long funk.
Obviously, it’s worked out pretty well.
After covering the team up close for the past few years, I decided to write a book on them. (It just published a couple of weeks ago. You’d probably like it!) As I was going back to report on the earlier years of how this juggernaut came about, I was struck time and again by questions revolving around talent vs. development and how exactly you “luck” into drafting a superstar.
That’s why I’m so fond of this excerpted section on Draymond Green. Picked at No. 35 in the 2012 NBA Draft, Green was the subject of myriad legitimate questions concerning his ability to adapt to the pro game. But as this passage details, Green showed flashes early on that he was destined for greater things, especially on one night during his rookie season when he went head-to-head with none other than LeBron James …