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Potential Warriors playoff run hinges on defense meeting moment

Potential Warriors playoff run hinges on defense meeting moment originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

With the clock ticking toward 11 p.m. PT on Tuesday night, Draymond Green sat at his cubicle in the Chase Center locker room addressing matters related to where the Warriors have been, where they are and where they’d like to go.

He talked about set plays vs. reads, the evolution of Chris Paul as a Warrior and the growth required for young players to properly utilize the offensive gravity of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.

And Draymond being Draymond, he naturally discussed late-season defense.

“We’ve seen teams in this league for years that made the mistake of thinking they can just put a great offense out there and their defense sucks and think they’re going to win,” Green said long after Golden State’s 104-100 win over the Dallas Mavericks. “As you run up against the team that is – it doesn’t even have to be as good on offense – just competent on the offensive end but they play defense you going to lose.”

This is and always has been the way to the mountaintop. While the Warriors’ offense weaved captivating spells during the glory years – 2015-2019 – it was their defense that was most responsible for the trophies. Good regular-season habits led to phenomenal postseasons.

And it’s the defense, led by Green, that will dictate whether they advance beyond the NBA play-in tournament and, if so, how far they will go in the playoffs. His ability to guard every position, coordinate the defense in real time and make plays on and off the ball is unique in the league.

The surest way to know there’s a white-hot sprint to the Western Conference playoffs is to glance at the late-season team metrics – specifically the ratings on offense and defense. We’ll focus on each team’s last five games through Tuesday.

The Warriors are 5-0 despite a 15th-ranked offense. Credit a defense ranking No. 2 in the league, with a 102.9 rating that is No. 1 in the West.

“Our defense is the one thing that is non-negotiable,” Green said. “We have to defend at that level.”

It’s the only way the Warriors…


Source link : https://sports.yahoo.com/potential-warriors-playoff-run-hinges-141814427.html

Author : NBC Sports BayArea

Publish date : 2024-04-04 15:05:17

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