Draymond explains why he was ‘more riled up’ vs. Grizzlies originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
Draymond Green entered the Warriors‘ matchup against the Memphis Grizzlies on Thursday night like it was a do-or-die NBA playoff game.
His mentality, emotions and frustrations throughout the entirety of the game showed just that.
Towards the end of the third quarter in what was a close battle throughout, Draymond was upset with Gary Payton II after a defensive effort turned into, what he believes, was an unnecessary foul.
Draymond explained to reporters after the game why he was so riled up Thursday night. It was a little bit of his high defensive IQ mixed with a vengeance.
“I think one rule of thumb on the defensive end is once you can see your guys’ numbers, you want to crack back,” Draymond explained. “And [Payton II] pushed me into Ja [Morant], which I had him stuck underneath the rim, which there’s nothing you can do there if I got you stuck under the rim, you trying to get something around. And I had him right where I wanted him, he’s about to go up, and I was about to jump and block it, and I got pushed into him. And so I was a little upset about that.”
Asked Draymond Green about a third quarter defensive sequence where he was upset at Gary Payton II.
He explained what he was getting on GP2 about, but also why he was so riled up for a Memphis game.
“This was a game I wanted to win very bad.”
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But a missed defensive opportunity wouldn’t upset a defender as great as Draymond unless it’s deeper than that.
And it is.
The Warriors’ 2020-21 season came to an end after falling to Memphis in a thrilling overtime play-in tournament game at Chase Center.
And the first time the two team’s met this season, just a few months after the heartbreaking elimination game, the Grizzlies gave Golden State terrifying flashbacks and once again beat the Warriors in their own home in OT.
Draymond doesn’t like losing, especially in home territory.
That’s why he was so focused on preventing Morant and the Grizzlies from snatching up another victory in San Francisco, and where part of that frustration came towards GP2.
“I was probably, you know, a little overly pissed off,” Green said. “This was a game I wanted to win very bad. It’s a team that beat us in the play-in game last year then came and beat us on our floor in a game that we let get away earlier this year… It’s a mental thing as well when you’re playing a team like that that plays you tough every game. So I was a little more riled up this game just because it was a very important game.”
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The Warriors ended up winning 113-104, and Draymond said him and GP2 are all good.
“I thought he handled it well, we went to the timeout, we moved past it and he continued to play great,” Green said.