Ever since his first NBA Finals with the Spurs (where he legitimately looked like he could have been finals MVP until he wet the bed in games six and seven), I’ve had this conception of Danny Green where he totally steps up in Finals games and makes everybody into his bitch with his three-point shooting. In my mind, he literally tells opposing fans near the sidelines “I’m the king of the Finals, nerd,” while jostling their nachos so the cheese and chips go everywhere. And he gets away with it because when it’s the Finals, nobody and nothing can stop him. Because he’s “Finals Danny Green”.
The reality of “Finals Danny Green” is slightly different from my ideas of “Finals Danny Green”. In his second Finals, when the Spurs won a ring, he played around 20 MPG and the most he scored was fifteen points. His three-point shooting was good, and my guess is he played some defense too, but he didn’t take over with twenty-point games like he did in his first Finals. He played as well as you would want a role-player to play, but didn’t really step past the boundaries of his role. I think. That series was a long time ago and I don’t remember much of it.
Now “Finals Danny Green” is back in business. He hit multiple three-pointers in expiring-clock situations and generally increased the amount of anguish in Warriors fans’ hearts by a significant amount (which is awesome because Warriors fans literally and unironically deserve as much anguish as they can get, multiplied by a thousand). Nobody would say he was the best player in the game, but everybody would say that he was the best role-player on the court (unless salty Warriors fans wish to contend that Draymond Green is a role-player). And I think that’s the true essence of “Finals Danny Green”. Being the best version of himself when the games matter the most.