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Lessons in Losing from Draymond Green

Lessons in Losing from Draymond Green

Every athlete loses at one point or another, but what's important is how you respond to a loss. A Draymond-inspired guide here:


Lessons in Losing from Draymond Green

The Warriors performed poorly in Game 3 of the NBA Finals, getting drubbed 120-90 by the Cavaliers.  However, they performed admirably off the court in the aftermath of the game, giving an honest evaluation of their subpar effort in postgame interviews.  Draymond Green’s Finals Diary 20 provides all athletes with great guidelines for how to respond to losing.

  1. Take Ownership - It is essential to claim and acknowledge the ways you came up short in defeat.  Referring to Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and himself, Draymond said, “All three of us [Warriors All-Stars] have been pretty awful.”  He also said that in Game 3 the Warriors as a whole were “extremely soft.”   Draymond’s honest, critical self-assessment after the loss is an encouraging thing to see. He takes ownership of his personal poor play and the team’s poor play; importantly, he gives no excuses.  This honest self-assessment is a necessary trait for all athletes.

  2. Have Perspective - However, it is important not to let criticism defeat you.  Draymond took note of the context and scale of the loss: “We just lost one game.” It is important to see a loss as just one step on your journey.  Draymond refutes the notion that the Warriors have to panic or make drastic shifts, because being up 2-1 in the Finals puts them “in a great spot.”  Not only that, but he realizes that the Cavs were in a desperate situation after losing the first two games of the series.  Draymond recognizes that the Cavs played with the necessary desperation for their situation.  

  3. Look Forward - Reflection after a loss must quickly translate into focus for the next game.  After processing the loss, it’s on to the next one.  You can never stay down on yourself.  Take whatever mistakes were made, and focus positively on them in the next game. It is no longer “we stunk at this,” but rather “we must do this well.”   For Draymond, he focuses on intensity: “We have to play with the same desperation we played with in Game 1 and 2. The same effort.”  “I’ll have my troops ready to go on Friday, ready for war.” Clearly, we see the shift in focus from Game 3 to Game 4.  An athlete’s focus has to shift quickly from the loss in the past to the win in the future.

The fact that all this came from a member of the defending champion and the team with the best regular season record in history reveals this: in order to be a champion, you must know how to lose.  Regardless of the result of the series, Draymond Green and the Warriors have taught athletes everywhere an important lesson in losing.


Topic: Motivation and Inspiration