Draymond Green may have been the reason the Golden State Warriors lost Game 5 of the NBA Finals to the Cleveland Cavaliers. However, the way Kyrie Irving and LeBron James were shooting the ball, he may not have made a huge difference defensively.
Green served his one-game suspension on Monday and will return for Game 6 on Thursday night. It won't be a guaranteed win inside Quicken Loans Arena, where the Cavs are 8-1 this postseason. The Cavs are a smart team, and they'll definitely try to get under Green's skin in Game 6 in an effort to get him to bite just like he did in Game 4.
Draymond is allowed just one more technical foul. That's it. If he gets a pair of technicals, a flagrant foul penalty one or flagrant foul penalty two, Green will be suspended for biggest game of the NBA's year: Game 7 of the NBA Finals.
It's highly unlikely that he receives a flagrant or two technical fouls, and if he does, the NBA will likely rescind it so the outcome of the game is decided on the court with the players as opposed to by the league.
Draymond Green is the anchor for the Warriors defensively, and the numbers show just how much of a difference Green makes against the Cavs.
According to NBA.com/stats, his defense gets better as his opponents get closer to the basket. While the Cavalier he’s defending shoots an average of 58.7% inside of 10 feet, he’s holding them to just 44.9%. Inside of six feet, they shoot an average of 63.3% and Green is holding them to just 46.2%.
Clearly, Golden State needs Green on the floor to help playmake as well as to be the team's emotional and vocal leader. We'll see if Green comes ready to play on Thursday at 9PM EST on ABC.
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