LeBron and Kyrie Irving torched the Warriors for 82 combined points, and stole Game 5 from the Warriors at Oracle Arena last night. Even though the unanimous NBA MVP, Steph Curry, was on the floor for Golden State, it became clear that the team MVP, Draymond Green, was watching the game on TV due to suspension. The Warriors without Green are like the A-Team without Mr. T.
Today in The Herd, Colin said Green’s tough guy role, and multi faceted skillset, is the one irreplaceable cog in the Warriors machine.
“Last night, with no Draymond, and Bogut gets hurt in the second half, you’ve got Harrison Barnes at the rack. You’ve got no tough guy. The suburb team lost their guy from Saginaw. And they didn’t have anyone to back him up.“
The Warriors advanced through portions of this year’s Playoffs while Steph Curry was sidelined with a knee injury. The loss of Curry was significant, but the Warriors have Klay Thompson and a bench loaded with capable scorers to step up in his absence.
Without Green, the Warriors don’t have a soul. He’s the agitator, the distributor, the rebounder. Most importantly, he’s the one tough guy on the team that can back up the Warriors arrogance, swagger, and trash talk. On a team full of undersized finesse scorers, Draymond is the bouncer.
“Golden State’s got 6’2’’, 180 pound Steph. 6’7’’, 190 pound Livingston. 6’7’’, 205 Klay. And 6’8,’’, 210 pound Harrison Barnes. That’s thin for a lacrosse team, that’s a skinny golf club.”
The Warriors have been compared ad nausea to the 1995 Bulls during their record breaking 73-win regular season. Even though it’s largely pointless to compare team’s from different era’s, the most striking similarity between the teams are their enforcers. Green is the irreplaceable tough guy for the Warriors, just like Dennis Rodman was for the Bulls.
“They’re very similar teams. And they’re no more similar than one spot. Rodman and Draymond. A little crazy. Can kick, can flail. Never truly appreciated. People don’t understand their basketball IQ. They’re the bouncer at the nightclub. Can do the dirty work. Can talk trash. Michael and Pippen didn’t have to get into that. Klay and Steph don’t have to get into the trash talk. Draymond can carry all that stuff. There is so much value in Draymond. Last night.”