February 26, 2012

Green wants 'championship effort' week ahead

EAST LANSING - Draymond Green left the floor shortly after picking up his fourth foul midway through the second half of his team's game against Nebraska on Saturday night.

The No. 6 ranked Spartans enjoyed a 27-point cushion at the time of their captain's departure and would have beaten the Huskers handily if Green had rode out the rest of the game on bench. But Green's return to the floor two minutes later helped transform a blowout victory against an overmatched opponent into a special moment for Michigan State's third-year captain.

Green played just four minutes after checking back in with 8:34 remaining. But within those minutes the senior leader pulled down the three rebounds he needed to become the fourth player in Michigan State basketball history to reach 1,000 in his career.

"Rebounding is a complete effort category and that is what this program has been built around," said Green. "To reach this in a category like that with greats like Johnny Green and Greg Kelser, that means a lot to me."

Ironically, Kelser, Michigan State's all-time leader with 1,096 career rebounds, was working as an analyst for the Big Ten Network broadcast.

"That is the guy who is the leading rebounder in school history and to get welcomed into the club so that means a lot," Green said. "I told him earlier in the year. I said, 'I am chasing your rebound record' and he said, 'the game that you get it, I will be here to present you the ball.'"

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