It wasn’t the perfect match but Golden State, despite a poor start five minutes from the end of the match, found a way to win. Back to the four encouraging elements on which the Warriors can count on their renewal.
The defense is coming back
That’s the big problem with Golden State’s start to the season: their defense is inconsistent. The Warriors are the team with the most fouls in the league, they lack discipline in defensive rebounding, but also in respecting the game plan. responded to produce their best defensive performance of the season.
“This was our best game of the season. We were all focused, and tight, both starters and substitutes. underlined Draymond Green. “They had 26 free throws, but I think we were still able to defend without making mistakes. »
Everything wasn’t perfect, however, as evidenced by the Cavs’ 14 offensive rebounds left, but with effort and intensity, the Warriors were better. It all started with Draymond Green and Kevon Looney setting the tone, but Steve Kerr and the powerful winger both want to take note of Klay Thompson’s great defensive performance, despite an address still at half mast.
“He’s been working hard, he’s survived training camp and I think it’s still affecting him but he’s getting better,” Steve Kerr assured. “For example, I found his defense on Donovan Mitchell incredible, especially late in the game. »
Golden State limited Cleveland to 40% shooting success, including just 26.7% from 3-pointers. Their bench, diminished by the absence of Dean Wade, scored only 15 points.
Steve Kerr’s Tight Rotation
In addition to the six majors, Steve Kerr tonight trusts Donte DiVincenzo, back from injury, Jonathan Kuminga, and the “two-way player” Anthony Lamb. This nine-man rotation allows Steve Kerr to have two starters on the field at all times, and alternates between Kevon Looney and Draymond Green at the 5 position. That leaves James Wiseman and JaMychal Green on the bench, as well as Moses Moody and Ty Jerome .
In the second half, Steve Kerr didn’t pick Jonathan Kuminga either. He, Moses Moody and James Wiseman, heralded as the next generation for the Warriors, received a total of four minutes of playing time. open his bank a little again.
“We haven’t opened up our bench too much in the last two games but when you’re struggling, you have to find a way to keep your head up and everything becomes easier” explained the Golden State coach. “We are getting our heads out of the water and when our game is better established, I think we will be able to have more players in the rotation again and it will be easier for them to be in the game. comfortable and to have confidence in them and in our collective. »
Anthony Lamb’s presence in this round has however been the surprise start to the season. Signed to a “two-way contract” just days before the end of training camp, the former Thunder player earned his playing time thanks to his work ethic and a playing profile that perfectly matched what Steve was looking for. Kerr.
If he is less talented than Moses Moody or Jonathan Kuminga, he currently has a better feel for the game and that is why he was rewarded with 23 minutes of playing time.
“He understands how to play, he knows where to position himself on the pitch, he is good, he will play hard” listed a beaming Draymond Green. “Since he’s here, I always see him coming two, three hours before training to work and I’m super happy for him because he’s been rewarded. »
The Awakening by Jordan Poole
Having struggled since the start of the season, Jordan Poole was more consistent last night. While he sometimes gets lost with his dribbling, he is still more crafty with the ball in his hands but also with his movements. His 18 points on 50% shooting success did the Warriors a lot of good, in support of Stephen Curry.
“It was only a matter of time to see him explode, and it’s the same for Klay [Thompson]» described by Steve Kerr. “I know it will go well for Jordan. He proved what he can do last season by helping us win the title. It’s not the first time he’s had to react but he does it every time opportunity. »
Draymond Green also explained that Jordan Poole is adjusting to the new attention that opposing defenses are giving him.
“When he comes off the dribble, the whole defense is focused on him and tonight he recognized him, released the ball and moved so he could recover and attack. It’s something he has to learn because he had a great season last year and now teams have had the whole summer to study his game.” described the strong winger. “He is in this phase of recognition, of adaptation to find how to score, how to attack. And it’s a compliment to see defenses play you like that. »
Stratospheric Stephen Curry and Draymond Green
39, 47, and 40 points. Or Stephen Curry’s point totals over the last three games, all on 65% shooting success! The MVP of the last Finals has been on another planet since the beginning of the season. The Cavs, who came to the Chase Center with the third-best defense in the league, did nothing to slow down the Warriors’ point guard. He scored 15 of his 40 points in the final quarter, and continues to attack and finish in the circle with efficiency worthy of a pivot (79% on the season!).
“I don’t know what adjective to use to describe Steph. [Curry]» snorted Steve Kerr after the meeting. “He is amazing game after game. The main difference that I find since my arrival is his physique. He is stronger, more durable and that allows him to take on both sides of the field, to defend well, to finish in the circle. He’s incredible. He’s never been that strong. »
Despite the fireworks from Stephen Curry, Draymond Green’s capital performance should also be highlighted, tonight against the Cavs. His defensive intensity set the tone for all of his teammates and forced him to push the ball as quickly as possible to set up the tempo he wanted, to break down the Cavs’ defense and both their interior. Draymond Green finished the game with 13 assists and 0 stray balls.
“Draymond was amazing tonight,” Kevon Looney said. “We need Steph and Draymond to show us the way when there’s adversity and that’s what they did against Sacramento and tonight against Cleveland. »
Interview in San Francisco.
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