During the course of a grueling 82-game season, it’s normal for players to experience an occasional shooting slump. For Danny Green, his off night was the entire 2015-16 season.
Last year, the San Antonio Spurs shooting guard was not his usual self. In 26.1 minutes of play, he averaged 7.2 points, 3.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists. He shot 37.6 percent from the field and 33.2 percent from beyond the arc. Those numbers constituted his lowest statistical season since joining the Spurs in 2010.
Injury was not the reason for Green’s decline. He remained relatively healthy throughout last season. He played and started for the Spurs in 79 regular season games and ten playoff appearances.
It’s unfair to blame Green for the Spurs’ semifinals ouster against the Oklahoma City Thunder. However, it’s worth mentioning that their second-round series featured three games decided by four points or less.
Green might have turned the tide of the series had he played like the 2014 version of himself. That year, he averaged 11.7 points, 4.2 rebounds and 2 assists while shooting 43.6 percent from the field and 41.8 percent from beyond the arc, as per Basketball Reference.
There have been speculation claiming that the Spurs would be better off without the seven-year veteran. The team is $14.5 million over the salary cap limit and the most realistic way R.C. Buford and company can restock on talent is through the trade market.
Michael Rehome of Air Alamo proposed that the Spurs should consider calling up the New York Knicks. Phil Jackson is in the process of completing his super-team roster. Green would be a welcome addition to the intimidating albeit wobbly back court of Derrick Rose, Brandon Jennings and Courtney Lee.
The trade would benefit both squads. It will allow the Spurs to shed Green’s $10 million pay check for the 2016-17 season. On the other hand, the Knicks will still have enough cap room to acquire an elite big man via trade or next free agency.