Why Draymond didn’t want to mess up GP2’s ring ceremony originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
Warriors star Draymond Green did his best to make sure Gary Payton II’s championship ring presentation went as smoothly as possible.
Speaking with reporters after the Warriors’ 118-112 win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday, Green explained what gifting Payton his 2022 championship ring in front of over 18,000 Warriors fans at Chase Center meant to the veteran.
“It was a very special moment,” Green said. “Quite frankly, I had so many words that I wanted to say but if I screwed that up, then we couldn’t do that for [fellow former teammates] Otto Porter and Damion Lee.
“I did not want to mess up those guys’ moments, so I tried to get my words out as fast as I could.”
By all accounts, Green’s presentation of Payton’s ring went about as well as can be expected. The 32-year-old shared some words about Payton’s path from a journeyman to an NBA champion and promptly gave the Trail Blazers guard a hug.
Before the ring presentation, Green reflected on Payton’s journey to being an NBA champion. Green said at Warriors shootaround Friday that he was “honored” when notified that he would be the one to give Payton the championship ring.
An integral part of the Warriors’ championship run, Payton signed a three-year contract with Portland in the offseason but has yet to play a game this season as he recovers from a core injury.
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The Warriors still have two championship rings to give out next month. Lee is set to receive his championship ring on Jan. 10 when the Phoenix Suns visit the Warriors, while Porter will get his ring when the Toronto Raptors come to Chase Center on Jan. 27.
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