JOSH Green says stinging criticism from Brisbane Lions Brownlow medallist Jason Akermanis was the spur he needed to recapture his best form.
Two weeks ago Akermanis told AFL.com.au he thought Green and fellow Lion Allen Christensen were a "touch overweight".
This came hot on the heels of a scathing critique from Lions coach Justin Leppitsch after the round five loss against Gold Coast, saying his small forwards were not working hard enough without the ball.
In the past two rounds Green's response has been emphatic.
The fleet-footed 22-year-old has kicked three goals in wins over Carlton and Port Adelaide and been a major reason for the Lions' reversal in fortunes with his forward pressure now meeting Leppitsch's demands.
When asked on Monday about the impact of Akermanis' comments, Green initially said they didn't bother him.
However, when asked again, the small forward opened up.
"I think you look at those things and make it spur you on," Green said.
"It's made me a better player, so maybe it was the article I needed."
After a slow start to the season, and Leppitsch's reality check, Green said he feared being dropped following the loss to the Suns.
"I had to review where I was going with my footy," he said.
"It was probably the kick in the guts me and Lewy (Taylor) needed. We weren't playing our roles properly.
"We had a chat with Leppa and that's why he's a really good coach, he made it simple.
"Squizzy (Taylor) has made a move to the wing, which has been really good for him, and I've got back to that pressure and kicking goals."
Leppitsch was full of praise for the pair following Sunday's upset 37-point win over the Power, saying it was just the response he was looking for.
"The best thing is Greeny had four or five tackles, he kicks his goals as well, but you need that combination, you can't have one without the other," Leppitsch said.
"He's playing well because he's doing both."