Not every player is built for the grind.
Not every player has that grit instilled in them.
Mavericks’ Josh Green is different.
The 18th overall pick of the 2020 NBA Draft walked into the Mavericks’ building day one ready to work. No matter the role or minutes per game, Green is ready whenever his number is called. And as of late, his number has been called on frequently.
“Yeah, I mean it’s something in which as a rookie, you don’t know what to really expect,” Green said, who has already started three games this season. “You come in with the attitude of trying to do whatever you can so for me, was I expecting it to be 12 games into the season? I had no idea but it’s just about making the most of it.”
And making the most of it is exactly what Green is doing. His impact, even as a rookie 12 games in to his young career, might not standout on the box score but his energy and effort is certainly felt.
Green has been sprung into action quicker than anyone could have imagined as COVID has hit the Mavericks like a ton of bricks. With Josh Richardson, Dorian Finney-Smith, and Jalen Brunson, who is now back in the lineup, have all been out due to a positive COVID test or contact tracing, Josh has been elevated into the rotation, and even the starting lineup, to fill the void on the wing.
So that mantra that Carlisle doesn’t play rookies? Well, so much for that.
“For me, it was not so much stuff that would show up in the stat sheet,” Green said. “People don’t really like the dirty work and all that, and it might not be the most appealing thing to watch but I feel like that’s what I can bring and all the stuff like offense will continue to come as the more comfortable I am on the court.”
Green had his best game of the season on Wednesday against the Pacers, finishing with eight points, six rebounds, and two assists in just under 23 minutes of action. The rookie’s ability to be in the right spot at the right time is evident, like making several backdoor cuts to the basket and just knowing exactly where to be on the defensive end.
“Just doing as much as I can to help the team out and understanding that I’m a rookie and I’ll make my mistakes but at the same time to learn from it and go out there and give my all.”
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