Draymond Green's career high in assists leads to Warriors win over Hornets
First three game winning streak of the season, baby!
Last night Draymond Green added another dazzling performance to his career as the Golden State Warriors swatted away the Charlotte Hornets 130-121 in San Francisco. Let’s jump into his impact on the court and how his teammates fed off of it (seven different Warriors scored in double figures).
Dray messed around and got a triple double?
Green’s 11 points, 12 rebounds, and career-high 19 assists helped GSW avenge their mind-numbing loss to Charlotte last week.
That defeat featured an embarrassing moment where Green screamed his way into an ejection in the deciding seconds of the contest. That bad gaffe effectively sunk the team and activated some eagerly trollish social media commentary:
Lol, “Triple Single” huh? The internet is so cruel.
Most nights Green’s impact on the court (defense, floor generalship) can be hard to glean from the box score, making him an easy target for those mocking the loud guy on the court averaging 5/6/8 per game.
But the three-time All-Star from Michigan State bounced back in the rematch against Charlotte, expertly orchestrating a turbo charged Warriors’ performance in a manner echoing the playmaking wizardy of another Spartan alum, Magic Johnson.
Imagine the horror the Hornets felt as Green morphed from “Mr. Triple Single” to the guy who dominated the 2019 Western Conference Finals. I’m not surprised that Green had this epic night in the rematch: he’s supremely competitive and I figured he’d come back with a vengeance.
The Warriors shot a blistering 60% from the field (45% from beyond the arc). It helped that Green had Stephen Curry for this game after he had missed the first contest with illness. Curry might as well have taken the court in beekeeper’s suit: the Hornets couldn’t bother him.
Oubre’s heating up while Wanamaker is ice cold
Let’s go back to the impact Green’s playmaking had. Green dimed up six different Dubs:
Green’s assist recipients
Kelly Oubre Jr.: 8
Stephen Curry: 5
Andrew Wiggins: 2
James Wiseman: 2
Kevon Looney: 1
Eric Paschall: 1
Oubre scored 27 points on 11-of-15 shooting (3-of-6 from beyond the arc); that means 72% of his buckets came right after a Green pass. After the game Green explained that he’s encouraging Oubre to make “timely cuts”; Oubre added that they knew they could force confusion in a young Charlotte team with a fast pace.
Oubre has steadily climbed out of his major early season slump to exhibit the scoring ability that the Warriors believed he had when they acquired him. His shooting numbers have resurrected out of the grave and now mirror his career averages, per Basketball Reference:
He’s also drawing praise for his stellar defense from assistant coach Ron Adams:
"Defensively, he's a very aggressive player," Warriors assistant coach Adams said Tuesday morning on KNBR's "Murph & Mac" show. "I like him because he's one of those guys that gets mad when he gets scored upon. That's what you really want in a defensive player.
"His versatility is amazing. He'll guard anyone from a point guard to a four-man. His aggressiveness on the ball is outstanding. He's learning other parts of the defensive regimen that you need to have. He's becoming a better helpside defender -- becoming more aware.”
It’s safe to say he’s emerged as a player the Warriors will rely on heavily if this team is going to make a credible playoff run, especially in the absence of the superweapon Klay Thompson.
Is the Oubre bandwagon getting some traction?
Div B @statcenterKelly Oubre's trendline by game score this season (chart from @cleantheglass). Dude's gone from comically awful to average to reeeeally valuable in two months https://t.co/fR6xs6TlOQ
Speaking of gaining traction, backup guard Brad Wanamaker’s name started trending on Twitter last night…and not in a good way.
Grant Liffmann @GrantLiffmannFor a guy that was brought in to be the consistently solid player, Wanamaker has probably been the most inconsistent player on the team this season
Wanamaker scored two points and committed two turnovers in his 12 minutes of play last night, capped off by a rough -14 plus/minus. His shot has been freezing cold (23.1% from 3PT range this year). Did Sub-Zero high five this man before the season started???
At least his defense has been legit according to his coach:
It may take Alcatraz level lockdown defense to protect Wanamaker’s spot while the Warriors other reserve guards (like Jordan Poole or Nico Mannion) chomp at the bit to contribute. Now THERE’S an interesting subplot to monitor as the season wears on: who will seize the backup PG spot behind Curry?
You wanted to draft Ball? That’s not Wise…man!
James Wiseman and LaMelo Ball’s names are linked forever since they went second and third respectively in the 2020 draft. Depending on who you ask, there’s some skepticism over the Dubs selecting the raw big man project over the slick Globetrotter-esque game of Ball.
Last night Ball started for his Hornets and rattled off an impressive 22-7-6 statline, showcasing his advanced feel for probing defenses. I don’t think it will be long before he starts getting future All-Star consideration in the East.
But Wiseman’s 16 points in 17 minutes (7-of-10 shooting from the field) were body blows to a Hornets team reeling from the offensive onslaught. Wiseman’s fit with Golden State’s offense was exemplified by the various (easy) ways he scored: rumbling in transition to the rim, catching lobs from Green, and attacking from the low post.
THROW IT DOWN BIG MAN! Yeah, I’m all in on the Wiseman project. The fit and the talent is becoming undeniable. When Curry and Green are getting downhill and warping defenses with their attacks, Wiseman is going to eat.
And since Wiseman’s shooting confidence already extends out to three-point distance there’s no telling how many ways the Warriors will torture defenses if he keeps figuring out his spots.
This was a big win for the Warriors to snag ahead of a difficult six game stretch.
Can they keep the mojo going? Keep it locked here at LGW to find out, same Gold Blooded time, same Gold Blooded channel!
P.S. I wanna give a huuuge thank you to the LGW team for holding down the fort here while I was getting my health together, and a big shout out to you good people for making this community a bastion of basketball conversation.
I’m back — Let’s Go Warriors.