Not only will the Memphis Grizzlies be on ESPN more this season, but one of their players will be featured on the network’s NBA broadcasts.
Grizzlies forward Danny Green has agreed to a TV deal with ESPN. Green will make 15 appearances and give his analysis and opinion on what is happening in the association.
“When I’m done playing, it’s something I’ve always wanted to venture into,” Green said. “It’s an opportunity to build a resume and can get reps.”
Green’s background prepares him for a successful media career. He has the perspective of a player who won NBA championships with three different teams and played with some of the best players in the game’s history. He also hosted his own podcast, where he directed 105 episodes between 2018 and 2022. The success of his podcast led the networks to reach out and strike a deal with ESPN.
Green is a graduate of the University of North Carolina, which has been a segway for many former players entering the media like Vince Carter, Brad Daugherty, Brendan Haywood and Kenny Smith.
But among the North Carolina alumni, former ESPN anchor Stuart Scott was the one Green idolized the most.
“When I thought I wasn’t going to be successful in basketball, I wanted to be like him,” Green said.
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Draymond Green’s role with TNT last season is a recent example of an active player providing in-season analysis.
Green is adamant that his ESPN appearances won’t impact his rehab with the Grizzlies. He tore his ACL in the second round of the NBA playoffs while playing with the Philadelphia 76ers.
The Grizzlies value Green’s leadership and want him around the young players and inside the squad as much as possible. He dressed for practice and did some light shooting practice, his return date is unknown.
“My main goal is to get my body back, get healthy and play as soon as possible,” Green said. “While I have time now, I have the chance to venture out and get some reps.”
“Surprisingly enough, a lot of people don’t realize how much downtime we really have.”
Green said people can expect him to speak positively, but he will try to give an unbiased opinion on what he’s seeing in the league without revealing any secrets about his rehab or the Grizzlies.
One of Green’s most notable podcast episodes came when he made sharp comments about Grizzlies nemesis Patrick Beverley. After the Phoenix Suns’ stunning loss to the Dallas Mavericks, Beverley appeared on ESPN likening Chris Paul’s defense to a practice cone.
“People are targeting you too, Pat Bev,” Green said in a May episode of his podcast. “You don’t play (expletive) defense. You don’t stop Luka.”
Green’s comments prompted a quick response from Beverley, and that’s the power and respect he has as a current NBA player with three championships.
Just as Beverley may remember those comments, Green won’t be surprised if a Grizzlies opponent scores one of his critics and uses it as motivation in his next game.
“I’m sure I’ll get some heat,” Green said. “We already have a target on our backs because of the quality (of the Grizzlies) last year, so we have a target on our backs regardless.”
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