Danny Green of the San Antonio Spurs.  (April 12, 2011)

Danny Green of the San Antonio Spurs. (April 12, 2011) Credit: Getty Images

With each day that passes, Danny Green can't help but think about the future.

The North Babylon and St. Mary's High School product is eagerly awaiting 12:01 a.m. Sunday, when the NBA free-agent market officially opens for business. His contract is up and he's hopeful he'll be able to return to San Antonio and make another run at a spot in the NBA Finals.

"Definitely, definitely a lot of anxiety," Green told Newsday at the Steve Nash Foundation Showdown soccer game in Manhattan this past week. "A very exciting time for me and my family. I'm anxious.

"San Antonio is definitely the first choice, but business is business at the end of the day. You never know what's going to happen. So I've got to make the best move for me and my family. Whatever happens is whatever arises."

Green got a shot to become an integral cog in the rotation during the regular season when Manu Ginobili got hurt. He really opened eyes in the NBA playoffs, stepping into Gregg Popovich's starting lineup, knocking down big shots and showing he can play solid defense.

In the Spurs' Western Conference second-round series-clinching win over the Clippers, he had 14 points, six rebounds and four assists. Not bad for a guy who spent a lot of time in the D-League in 2011, playing in only eight games for San Antonio in two separate stints.

Now that playoff performance might help Green land a nice new contract.

"It helped a lot," said Green, who averaged 7.4 points and 3.2 rebounds per game during the postseason. "San Antonio, obviously, they are my No. 1 option because they have given me the opportunity and they took a chance with me. I had a chance to showcase what I can do, that I belong in the league and I can play a little bit. So hopefully, other teams could see that and hopefully this could be a big step in my career and lengthening my career."

Green, who played for North Carolina, was thrilled he got a chance to visit family and friends on Long Island before heading back to San Antonio to see where he'll play next season. Opportunities to come home don't occur as often as Green might like, but he'll return to Suffolk County to host his basketball camp at the end of July, looking to inspire youngsters and share tales of his 2011-12 campaign.

"It was a great year for me," Green said. "I had a lot of fun. I had a chance to play. I had an opportunity to be a big piece of the puzzle for a special team. But we didn't make it as far as we would like. We came up short. I didn't play as well as I would have liked in the last series. But it's a learning experience.

"I would like to think we have a chance for myself and the other young guys to grow and be better in the future."

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