Draymond Green gives a big boost to Warriors on his return
Draymond Green returned to the Golden State Warriors in their 126-112 win over the Washington Wizards and his perfomance was nothing short of spectacular.
On Monday night Steph Curry got a speecial birthday present in the form of the return of one of the Warrior's best players.
Draymond Green returns for Warriors win
When Draymond Green stepped onto the court on Monday night, for what would ultimately be 126-112 Warriors win over the Washington Wizards, Steph must have felt like his Birthday couldn't get any better. Not only had it been more than 2 months since the dynamic duo shared the court together, but it was also a little over two and half years since they played with Klay Thompson. Needless to say it didn't take long for Green to show just what Golden State had been missing. Approaching the 5 minute mark in the first quarter, Curry called for Green to marshal the floor and to direct traffic. The play would see Curry sink a 3.
"He threw me right in the fire," Green said. "I checked in, and he called a play where I had the ball. And I was very thankful for that because it immediately allowed me to settle down. That's one thing I won't forget. I may forget a lot of things, but one thing I won't forget: how to get him the ball."
Steph Curry now got the help he needed
To say that Curry and the Warriors were missing green would not only be stating the obvious, but it would be an understatement. On the night Curry posted 47 points on 16-of-25 shooting, including seven 3-pointers. That 41 of those points came when Green was on the court only further punctuates the point that Curry was indeed missing his wing-man. In fact when asked whether there was any relation between Curry's performance and Green's return, Warriors head coach Steve Kerr simply responded with "100 percent." Kerr went further, "It changed for Steph right away, as soon as Draymond got out there. The chessboard changes with Draymond out there. With Steph, everything looks and feels a little bit different."
Of course none of this should come as a surprise. Over the last decade Green and Curry's have firmly established a system of play. Curry's shooting ability when combined with Green's vision and passing range makes for a potent mix. "When I'm not out there and when I'm watching, I see things that can be done that can help him out," Green said of Curry. "He's the greatest shooter we've ever seen. But you still have to screen, and you still have to find him in good spots and make sure he gets good shots and easy looks as opposed to tough looks all the time."
How much damage did Draymond Green and Steph Curry do?
Though he would only see 15 minutes on the court with Curry - he was under a 20 minute restriction - Green most definitely made up for lost time. Between the two they subjected the Wizards to a brutal 169.7 offensive efficiency. Indeed, during the time the Warriors shot 69% from the field, including 9-of-15 from 3, and overall had a plus-23 point differential. Conversely, when Curry was alone, the Warriors were outscored by six. Curry himself seemed to echo the sentiments of his coach when asked about Green. "It's just chemistry and understanding how to create good looks, especially when I'm coming off the ball or if he's in the pick-and-roll," Curry said. "Ten years of that, so it shouldn't be that surprising."
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As for the man the moment, Green gave his own take on the team's dynamic. "Everybody says, 'Oh, there is no Draymond without Steph.' That's 100 percent true," Green said. "And there's no Steph without Klay and Draymond. And we are aware of that. And it's why it's been such a beautiful brotherhoodand partnership over the last 10 years."
How did Draymond Green do against the Wizards?
While his numbers were modest to an extent, finishing the game with 6 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists, he did so in 20 minutes and that's without mentioning his team-high plus-24 net rating. Curry would actually refer to Green's performance as a "clinic" when speaking about his teammate's impact in Monday night's win. "He's amazing at reading plays, whether he's the one playmaking or he's setting screens," Curry said of Green. "He knows how to sacrifice his body. He's been doing it for a very long time, helping me and Klay get open."
Fellow returnee Klay Thompson agreed. "...Gets us open shots," Thompson said. "Gets us in the rhythm of the offense. Just gets us going." That is of course what the Warriors will be hoping for as the season approaches it's closing stages. After a string of a disappointing results, Golden State will surely be trying to turn a corner and with Green's return and subsequent performance, it would seem they are set to do just that.