Draymond Green playoffs diary, Part 11
‘This is definitely foreign territory for us.’
Draymond Green has evolved into one of the most interesting personalities in the NBA, and perhaps all of sports — the vocal leader and emotional engine for one of the most compelling NBA teams in recent memory.
Green has agreed to give The Undefeated’s Marc J. Spears an exclusive look into his life on and off the court, via a playoff diary that Green hopes will end with a second straight NBA championship for the Golden State Warriors.
Diary Entry No. 11: May 17, 2016
The Golden State Warriors lost Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals, 108-102, to the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday night in Oakland, Calif. It snapped the Warriors’ seven-game playoff series opener winning streak. Thunder All-Stars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook combined for 53 points, 16 rebounds, 15 assists and 10 steals. Green had 23 points, five rebounds and four assists while missing all four 3-pointer attempts. Golden State’s Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson combined for 51 points. The Warriors allowed 20 points off 14 turnovers and blew a 14-point lead. Golden State has not lost two straight games all season.
“The locker room was pretty much the same. Guys were a little quieter than normal. That’s how it is after a loss. It’s not a big deal. Nobody is panicking or anything like that. We keep our same demeanor. It’s definitely odd because it’s something that we’ve never been through. We’ve never been down 0-1 [since heading into Game 2 of the 2013 Western Conference semifinals down 1 to the San Antonio Spurs]. But hey, you bounce back and win Game 2, bounce back and win this series and it’s that much sweeter.
“We were really good on the defensive end, but our offense was really bad. We fell into a lot of ‘iso’ game. We didn’t move the ball as much as we needed to. There were stretch spurts where we did. But overall, we didn’t move the ball like we usually do and that’s what cost us the game. I think we lost the game in the third quarter.
“Next game, we got to move the ball, trust our offense and trust each other. A lot of the times, all of us try to do it all on our own. It would be better if we do what has been good for us all year. We’ve been the best ball-movement team the entire season. We can’t get away from it now and play their brand of basketball.
“We know this won’t be an easy task. This is a team that always will continue to fight. We just got to be better. If we stay solid — solid was winning us the game. Once we got out of character that is kind of when they took control of the game.
“There are a million calls missed throughout the course of the game. If we play our brand of basketball, it doesn’t come down to the [possible travel by Westbrook].”
“Steph is back … After really missing everything for three weeks, he’s not going to immediately come back as natural as he was the entire season. But I think he’ll be fine. It’s not really a worry of ours.
“Some Warriors fans will probably panic, and that’s OK. This is definitely foreign territory for us. We haven’t lost a Game 1 [since May 6, 2013]. But I enjoy the challenge and it will be fun. We will bounce back from this.”