Not surprisingly, the play sent both the fanbase and the Lakers bench into a complete frenzy.
Taking off from the wing and tracking down a James missed three-pointer, Green emphatically threw down the putback slam and thrust himself onto SportsCenter’s Top 10 plays of the day – good for number six.
Follow the Heavy Los Angeles Lakers page for the latest breaking news, rumors and content!
Lakers’ Danny Green Drug Tested After Epic Dunk Against Hawks
The NBA has a habit of drug testing players after they perform a bit outside their expected norm. Green’s teammate Alex Caruso earned himself a “random” drug test last season after going on an impressive scoring tear after serving as an underutilized two-way contract player for the bulk of the year.
Green is mostly known for his three-point shooting and his defense, so when he got that far up to throw down a vicious slam, it was undoubtedly a bit out of character. Green has always had excellent athleticism in his toolkit, however, his role never mandated that he crash the offensive glass and go headhunting on putback slams.
Danny Green’s Impact on the Lakers
Danny Green has been a breath of fresh air for the Lakers so far. While their three-point shooting as a team leaves a lot to be desired, Green is more than doing his part – knocking down 42% of his deep balls this season. The Lakers’ best three-point shooting weapon last season was Lance Stephenson, who shot a tepid 37% from downtown. Last year’s team spoiled a number of great open looks from LeBron James and Green was a major point of emphasis in the offseason to help address that moving forward.
With Green on the floor, defenses are often stuck deciding if they want to send Green’s man over to help on the duo of LeBron James/Anthony Davis. Green’s ability to routinely knock down open looks not only pads his stat sheet but helps give James and Davis valuable space to work. If Green opens up a game knocking a few deep balls down, defenses tend to learn their lesson quick – allowing James and Davis to go to work without worrying about help defenders.
While Green’s impact has been huge so far, the Lakers need to see more consistent shooting from the rest of their bench in order to have the necessary depth to contend for a title. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Quinn Cook, Alex Caruso, and Troy Daniels have all looked streaky at that end so far. The impressive collective shooting talent among the group is undeniable but for whatever reason, they haven’t had the best start to the year offensively. The open looks aren’t going anywhere so expect the Lakers to have plenty of opportunities to shoot themselves out of the funk.