Green fits like a glove for the Spurs. He also persevered in the NBA Development League after losing his job with the Cleveland Cavaliers, who selected him with the 46th pick in the 2009 NBA Draft.
Now, Green is in the record books with the most 3-pointers ever made in one NBA Finals (25).
There's an abundance of talent in NCAA Division I basketball in the United States and only 60 players get drafted each year into the NBA, including international talent, especially from Europe. And even with the growth of the D-League as the NBA's official minor league in recent years, the D-League can actually have an ever bigger role if it serves as a landing spot of sorts for guys overseas.
For instance, the Japan Basketball Association, the nation's governing body for the sport, can play a more active role in working with the D-League to find jobs for D-League-caliber players in the 21-team bj-league and the 12-NBL (renamed JBL). Between the two leagues, that's 33 teams -- indeed, a lot of roster spots for players with something to prove. (And already a number of top standouts with D-League experience have suited up for Japan teams; other times, teams take the cheap route and sign guys who attended D-II, D-III or NAIA schools and are less likely to excel or last.)
Securing a real partnership with the JBA could be beneficial for the D-League if the Japan leagues prove to be fertile ground as, essentially, an Asia-based D-League2.
And that extends to Japanese athletic trainers, assistant coaches, head coaches, not just players, all of whom should view the D-League as a vital proving ground and/or stepping stone in their careers.
Link Tochigi Brex point guard Yuta Tabuse spent a lot more time in the D-League than he did in the NBA. Other Japanese should consider the D-League a target, too, especially guys on the Japan senior national team and U-22 squad. The plan: Reach the D-League, excel there and pave the way for future influx of Japanese to the NBA. It's a process, of course, not one rapid step.
And at the same time, D-Leaguers that are not getting playing time -- the bench warmers -- could benefit from having the chance to play in Japan if the roster transaction was as simple as a snap of the wrist.
Adding more D-League talent to the bj-league and NBL at any stage of the season would keep the competitors hungry and intense.
And if coaches excel in the Japan leagues and yearn for challenges overseas, there's nothing that says some of them shouldn't vie for D-League assistant or HC positions in the future. In fact, the NBA could co-sponsor or underwrite a tutorial program to help Japanese improve conversational English to make their job prospects more realistic overseas.
Danny Green's success shows that perseverance is a key to excellence in this profession.