How Danny Green Spent His Summer Vacation

With the 46th pick in this year’s Draft, the Cavaliers tabbed the versatile Danny Green – fresh off his National Championship run at North Carolina. Green is the all-time leader in victories at the prestigious institution of hoops higher learning.

But now, Danny Green is just like most other NBA rookies. He has no idea where he’s going in his new city, he’s not immediately recognized on the streets and, of course, every morning he’ll be picking up the Krispy Kremes for the entire squad.

So after bouncing from Long Island to Las Vegas, and Chapel Hill to Cleveland, the former Tar Heel took a moment before his inaugural Training Camp to sit down with to talk about how he spent a summer “vacation” that was anything but …

On the first thing he bought once he signed his rookie contract …
Actually, I haven’t bought anything yet. I really haven’t bought much. I wasn’t sure if (the Cavs signing me) was going to be definite. The day I found out they were going to sign me, the first thing I did was come here to the Courts. I didn’t buy anything. I haven’t been able to get a car yet. I just signed the lease for my apartment and right now I’m in the process of buying things for my place.

On playing with LeBron James this summer …
I went to LeBron’s camp and played with him there. I think he’s been here at Cleveland Clinic Courts at least once a week; at least the times I’ve been here. (I’ve been gone on the weekends, moving my stuff up and getting little things done.) I played LeBron here yesterday. I’m getting a feel for him, here and there. I played against him last week and with him this week. I’m trying to get adjusted. Find my niche, find my role.

We haven’t really gone up challenging the rim just yet. But, there was this one time where he forgot to box out, and I did catch a put-back.

On New York City hoops …
I’m from Long Island. I get into the city a little bit. I grew up playing in the city. I’ve played in every borough. I played for the Long Island Panthers growing up, and we played in all the boroughs. But when I go home now, I work out right around the corner from my house, with a guy named Jerry Powell.

In terms of being the mecca of playground basketball, I don’t know if it’s as strong anymore. Coming up, we had some guys that were pretty good. And before me, there were some guys that were really good. I used to watch guys like Andre Barrett, Omar Cook. I was one of the young guys on Charlie Villanueva’s team. New York basketball’s been pretty good over the years.

On Summer League in Las Vegas …
Vegas was a lot of fun. It was good. At times it was confusing. But it was fun. First couple games, I got a lot of minutes and played pretty well. After that, I didn’t play as much. And that was a little frustrating, especially when we weren’t winning games.

But altogether, it was a good experience and a lot of fun. I got to know a lot of these guys better.

On being famous in Cleveland …
I’ve been at the hotel the whole time. Maybe one or two people recognize me. I think the lady at Denny’s recognizes me because I’m a regular there and her husband was a big North Carolina fan.

On his rookie duties …
Yeah, I know I have to get the donuts. And I heard the donut place is far. I think they have to be Krispy Kremes. I’m sure the veterans will inform me – soon. And I’m sure the people at Krispy Kreme will get used to me. I’m the only rookie.

On the recent North Carolina Alumni game …
They just had it this year. I think they wanted to recognize our National Championship. At the UNC-Citadel football game, we got our rings. We got two of them: National Champs and ACC Champs. They’re really nice.

The Alumni game was fun. A lot of the guys came back – Vince (Carter), Antawn Jamison, Shammond Williams, Marvin Williams, Sean May, Raymond Felton, Rashard McCants, Jeff McInnis, Brendan Haywood, Brandan Wright. Julius Peppers was there, but he didn’t play.

And, of course, there was Ty (Hansborogh), Wayne (Ellington) and I. We had a ton of guys. It sold out pretty fast.

They had a draft to select teams. Phil Ford drafted our team. And actually, Coach Q (John Kuester) was coaching us, too. George Karl coached the other team. George Lynch was there with some of the older guys, but he didn’t play.

Michael was there, of course.

The game was competitive. I don’t think the other team saw it as competitive at first. But we started to put it on ‘em early. And they responded. It wasn’t sloppy play or anything. And at the same time you have Vince, the human highlight. And he was doing these ridiculous dunks.

On his pet, and bringing her to Cleveland …
I have a red-tail Columbian boa constrictor named “Jade.” She’s about six feet long right now.

I wanted a pet, but something low maintenance. You don’t have to feed it as much. I feed her now only once every few weeks. When I first got her, I had to feed her once a week. (You feed them more when they’re babies.) They’re low-maintenance. You really don’t have to do much. But you have to handle them, to make sure they know you.

She eats rats. You can get them at the pet store. And to feed her, you just grab it by the tail and drop it in. And she’ll go hunt. She strangles it first. (She is a predator.) Some people don’t get live rats because they don’t want their snakes to become aggressive, but boas are natural hunters. So I let her do it the natural way. (Don’t worry: she knows the difference between food and people.)

Jade’s in New York right now. But she’ll be down here with me soon.