The part of Otto Porter’s game that has surprised Draymond Green

SAN FRANCISCO — One thing Draymond Green has learned about new teammate Otto Porter Jr.: the guy knows how to clean glass. It may not look like it in the stat sheet, but Porter has been an unheralded part of Golden State’s unexpected rebounding resurgence.

The Warriors are leading the NBA with 40.7 defensive boards per game, a 16.1% improvement from last year. The 4.0 per game from Porter show up in bigger ways than the stat sheet, according to Green.

“I’m not sure how many rebounds he’s averaging, but I do know when I’m watching a game, Otto Porter comes up with big rebounds. He comes up with rebounds in traffic,” Green said. “That’s something I didn’t know he had to his game.”

Porter, according to Basketball Reference, is playing the most minutes of his career at the 5 spot, almost half his time on the court this season. Coming off two seasons marred by injury, Porter has also taken on a more refined role, averaging the fewest minutes of his career (17.1 per game) since his rookie season.

It wasn’t Green or Andre Iguodala or Gary Payton II who was crowned the defensive player of the month for the first portion of the season. Porter Jr. took home the prize, an in-house honor created by assistant coach Mike Brown.

“I get no love from Mike Brown,” Green joked.

The success on the boards is a team effort, led by veterans such as Porter and Green and Iguodala. It doesn’t hurt when point guard Stephen Curry occasionally grabs double-digit rebounds, too.

Green is leading the way with 8.9 per game, followed by Curry’s career-best 7.6, but five other players are contributing at least 4.0 per game. Altogether, Golden State has gone from a middle-of-the-road rebounding team to one of the NBA’s best.

“To me it’s just having a lot of veteran players who understand the value of boxing out,” coach Steve Kerr said. “You get four guys boxing out and one guy going for the ball, you’re going to get your share. We haven’t had some of the leaks … letting guys run in there and get a free run at the hoop … because we’ve got veteran guys who are locked in and taking care of their man, boxing out every time.”

It starts on the defensive end, where the Warriors are the top-rated team in the league through seven games.

“If you’re in good defensive position, that’s the first step to rebounding, being in the right position,” Green said. “I think when you look around, we have a scrappy team. We have a good defensive team that tries to stay in the right position, and that helps with our rebounding.”

© 2022 KFMF-FM. Internet Development by Frankly Media.