Pacific Notes: Green, Brown, Clippers, Reddish

Draymond Green will return to the court today after missing 16 games during his suspension and reconditioning process, but it might take some time before the Warriors look like a cohesive unit, writes Kendra Andrews of ESPN. Golden State had the second worst defense in the league during Green’s absence, according to Andrews, giving up 123.8 points per 100 possessions. The Warriors have allowed opponents to score at least 70 points in the first half in four of their last six games.

“Nothing ever just flips,” Green said. “I don’t look at myself as some savior, like this is going to save our defense or anything like that. I think I can help with communication. And like with everything else, it’s contagious.”

Green stayed away from the Warriors while he underwent counseling and didn’t rejoin the team until his suspension was lifted on January 6. He believes the break from basketball helped with his mental health, and coach Steve Kerr indicated that it could be beneficial for everyone.

“He’s still obviously a huge part of this thing and a huge part of our leadership,” Kerr said. “But he needs the awareness that comes with what he’s just gone through and what he has put the team through as well.”

There’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • Mike Brown is the latest coach to vent about officiating, but he found a creative way to do it after the Kings‘ overtime loss Sunday at Milwaukee, per Rich Rovito of The Associated Press. Brown brought the team’s video coordinator and a laptop to his post-game press conference to show reporters the calls that led to his ejection. “The referees are human, and they’re going to make mistakes, but you just hope that there’s some sort of consistency and there’s some sort of communication between the refs,” Brown said. “The refs tonight, they were great, they communicated with me all night. But in terms of consistency, you guys saw it right here. In my opinion, the consistency wasn’t here tonight.”
  • Seerat Sohi of The Ringer looks at how the Clippers were able to get all their stars on the same page after a rough start to the James Harden era. Coach Tyronn Lue believes they were too deferential to one another following the trade that brought Harden to L.A. “I think not wanting to step on each other’s toes. I think having respect, all four guys having a huge respect for each other,” Lue said. “Sometimes that can be a negative because now they don’t want to do what they’re capable of doing.”
  • Cam Reddish could miss multiple games after leaving each of the Lakers‘ last two contests with knee soreness, tweets Dave McMenamin of ESPN.
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