Chase and UNINTERRUPTED have partnered to create "Kneading Dough," a series of intimate and honest conversations with professional athletes about how they've navigated their unique financial and career pathways. We hope our readers are inspired, informed, and empowered to make the best financial decisions.
In this video, Golden state Warriors power forward Draymond Green talks to entrepreneur Maverick Carter about his financial journey, which is in line with what everyday Americans think about, too.
Managing a windfall of money
Green, originally from Saginaw, Michigan, played for Michigan State where he and the team played twice in the Final Four. In 2012 he was drafted by the Golden State Warriors and was key to their 2015 NBA championship win.
During Green's first year in the NBA, he earned an $850,000 salary. That's a lot of money for anyone—but especially for a young person straight out of college. Green says he had to learn to be smart managing money. After taxes and expenses, Green realized he would be down to about half of his original salary—and he wanted to make the most of it.
"At the end of the day, I was 22 years old," he recalls thinking, adding, "I can't live the rest of my life off this $400,000 I'm going to take home, but I can teach myself about money.
Anyone can have a sudden infusion of money—a tax refund or wedding cash. So, it's important to know how to handle it.
Building a team of his own
Green had to find advisors, and other people who could help him reach short- and long-term financial goals. Green talks about what he looked for in an advisor.
"I wanted to go with someone who thought bigger picture—[beyond] just how to manage this NBA player's money," he says. "I want go with someone who's managing a billionaire's money, because maybe they're doing something a little bit different than I am."
Locker room investment talk
The Golden State Warriors play in the San Francisco Bay Area, home to Silicon Valley. Tech executives and venture capitalists are frequently at Golden State Warriors games, and meet players--and, sometimes, ask them to invest in companies. So, Green says, it's not unusual for some of the locker room talk to center on competition, and investments.
"I'm fortunate enough to play on a team where we are not only good in basketball, but there are also some smart guys," Green says. "It's a good, fun competition, a friendly competition. And I think it's great to keep pushing guys in the right direction."
Talking about money doesn't have to be awkward, and there are ways to make it easier.
Planning for life off the court
Green knows he won't play basketball forever. And so he needs to set himself up for life off the court— and, ultimately, retirement. He says that everyone has a number that they want to reach before they truly feel successful. Green says wants to be a billionaire by age 40. That means making smart investment decisions and using it as a scorecard for life.
"I think the most important decision I've made is to just surround myself with the team that I have," he says.