Golden State Warriors power forward Draymond Green is known for his grit and versatility on the court but his mother, Mary Babers-Green, is becoming just as famous off the court thanks to her outspoken live-tweeting during Dubs games and public support of her son. Green’s mother grew up in Saginaw, Michigan, where she still lives, and she has three children.
Here’s what you need to know about Draymond Green’s mother Mary Babers-Green:
1. Draymond Green’s Mother Mary Babers-Green Had 3 Children & He Said She Raised Them in a Stable Environment & He Never Really Knew They Were Poor
Babers-Green was raised by a teenage mom and she herself became a young mom in Saginaw, Michigan, Mercury News reported. She has three children: Green, a son named Torrian Harris, and a daughter named LaToya. When her kids were growing up, Babers-Green was known to many in the community as children often came to her for a warm meal or a respite from what was going on in their own homes.
“When you made a pot of beans, you didn’t make enough for just your kids,” she told the publication. “You made some in case other kids needed something to eat. My momma did the same thing. My dad was that way. If there are hungry kids, you feed them. You put yourself last in the equation.”
Green credited his mother with giving him and his siblings a stable upbringing, as he said he never felt poor and their house had everything he needed. “Going back to my mom, I’m so appreciative of her,” he shared on the Checc’n In Podcast. “We had a house, we had lights, we had water. You know, there were a couple times it got cut off but she got it cut right back on.”
He said it wasn’t until he got to the NBA and his accountant suggested that he add his mother to his taxes that he found out how much money she made. “My mom was making $17,000 a year,” he revealed. “I said, ‘Wow, we really were poor.’ She never let me see that.” Green also said he was “best friends” with his mother growing up and their relationship is “so real and genuine,” he told Mercury News.
2. Mary Babers-Green Grew Up Playing Basketball & She Still Lives in Saginaw, Michigan
Like her son, Babers-Green grew up with a love of basketball and played when she was young, although she often didn’t have the right attitude to play on teams. She told Sports Illustrated that she “had game” and could play in any position like Green, but her biggest issue was following coaches’ instructions.
Babers-Green got the nickname Too Too since she was “double trouble,” the publication wrote. She was kicked off the junior high basketball team because of her attitude and threw a basketball at the face of another high school coach. She said her failure at becoming a coachable team player is one of the reasons she was so hard on not just Green but his coaches too. “I started to tell my kids: I was the best damn nothing there ever was,” she told GQ. “I was smart in school, I could play any sport, I was super athletic, but none of them materialized into anything.”
While Babers-Green is her son’s biggest supporter and she also loves basketball, she decided to keep living in Saginaw, Michigan, even though he now lives in California. On one visit, she said she didn’t like the “long bridges” in the Bay Area. “I don’t like a lot of water. I’ve got a phobia,” she told the Detroit Free Press. She said she was also worried about earthquakes.
Instead, she follows all of the Dubs games from home and interacts with fans on Twitter. She told the Detroit Free Press that she didn’t expect to enjoy NBA games so much as she’s always preferred watching college games where the hard work and dedication can be more apparent. “I watch the NBA and I sometimes question if these guys like the game at all, you know?” she asked.
Despite the distance, Babers-Green said she doesn’t mind that her son plays in California and doesn’t feel the need to see him traded to a closer team like the Detroit Pistons. “I want him to stay in the place that will be the most productive for his career, and I want what makes him happy,” she shared. “The Bay loves Dray, and Dray loves the Bay. I’ve got NBA TV.”
3. Draymond Green Bought His Mother a New House After He Was Drafted by the Warriors
Although Babers-Green opted to stay in Saginaw, one of Green’s first purchases, after he was drafted by the Warriors from Michigan State in 2012, was a new house for his mother.
The move came about after a scary moment when Babers-Green found a mask-wearing intruder coming into her home through the bathroom window. She told Sports Illustrated that he put a gun to her head and she heard a click. She shared, “I thought I was dead. But when I realized I wasn’t, I tried to kill that man with my hands.”
The intruder escaped through the window but once he was gone, she called her son and told him what had happened. Green told his mother that he wanted her out of that house and in a new home across town, and he bought her the new place.
She said that she doesn’t expect any gifts or luxuries from her son despite his salary and even stayed away from visiting him on Mother’s Day in 2017. Green told Mercury News at the time that “She knows if she’s here, I’m probably gonna do something (for her).”
4. Mary Babers-Green Worked as a Campus Patrol Officer Until Recently & She Now Heads a Mentor Program for Young Girls
Babers-Green worked for many years as a campus patrol officer for a middle school in the Saginaw Public School System and recently retired from that job to focus on philanthropy instead.
Green’s mother has always been a hard worker, and Sports Illustrated reported that she worked two jobs, at a school and a rehab facility, when her children were growing up. In addition to her jobs, she took classes at Davenport University and drove Green hours to and from Detroit several times a week for his basketball games. “How did I make that work?” she asked. “How did it happen?”
Even after Green was drafted into the NBA, she continued working at Thompson Middle School as a campus security officer. It wasn’t until Green signed his $82 million contract extension with the Warriors in 2015 that she decided to retire, she told Mercury News. However, while she stepped back from that position, she continued her involvement in the community and created a mentor program with her friend Sallivia Browder called Jagged Diamonds.
The program is designed to help middle school and high school-aged girls with mentoring, advice, and help, including with feminine products and hair styling tips as well as life and career advice, Mercury News reported. The girls in the program will meet at Browder’s house on Saturdays and the two-hour meeting usually goes much longer than that. The two women cook for the girls and then they’ll talk about whatever subject the girls want to raise that week.
“What we’ve created is a sisterhood between the girls,” Browder explained. “We walk them through whatever issues that go in, whether they are struggling in school or struggling with the relationships that have. We have girls that deal with depression, girls that have been molested. We just address whatever needs to be addressed during that session.” Browder and Babers-Green are well-known in the community and have good connections with counselors and other local organizations.
5. Draymond Green’s Mother Mary Babers-Green Is Known for Being Very Outspoken on Social Media
Green’s mom is well-known to Warriors fans as she doesn’t hold back on Twitter during games, slamming everyone from coaches and refs to Green’s teammates, his opponents and other fans.
Her trash-talking started long before that, however, and she said she’s been thrown out of gyms on several occasions. She told GQ that her nickname is “The Heckler,” and she “probably got thrown out four or five times.” She even recalled one occasion when she threw water at a security guard who was blocking her view of Green playing.
In terms of the live-tweeting, Babers-Green said she started when her son was playing at Michigan State because it was her way of feeling like she was at the game. She asserted that she’s never tweeted anything that she wouldn’t say in person at the game, but that didn’t stop Green from deleting his mother’s Twitter account. “He took it away because he said I didn’t know how to act,” she laughed during her interview with GQ.
Despite that, she made her way back on the social media platform and told KTVU in 2016 that her son doesn’t really mind it anymore. For an outspoken mother, fans might be surprised to find out that Babers-Green texts her son before every game and urges him to stay calm.
According to her conversation with Andscape, she shared that one such message said, “Love you STAY FOCUSED, CONTINUE TO LEAD & do as you said JUST PLAY bump [don’t worry about] those refs… NO DISRESPECT TO ANYONE BUT THE COURT! SHOW EM WHAT YOU CAME TO DO! Muah!” He replied, “Indeed. Love you too.”
Green said he usually gets texts from his mother as well as from his wife Hazel Renee, and they’ve been really good at getting him in the right mindset before he plays. As Babers-Green puts it, she wants her son to focus on playing and leave the trash-talking to her.