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May 22, 2022

Draymond Green

Golden State Warriors

Game 3: Postgame

Warriors 109, Mavericks 100

Q. Draymond, after that sequence with the backcourt violation, technical foul, personal foul, you really picked up your play at both ends, is that a fair assessment?

DRAYMOND GREEN: Yeah, fair. I got really upset. It clearly wasn't a backcourt and then I got a tech for saying "that's whack." Yeah, I was pissed off. Thanks, helped me play a lot better. Appreciate it.

Q. You played almost 40 or 40 minutes, Steph played 40, Klay close to 40, was this the circled game where you have to win this one?

DRAYMOND GREEN: It's just a feeling you have in these series. Coming off a win like last game, you know if you can come in and play good basketball and you can essentially put a team away tonight. Now, this team isn't going to quit. They are led by a Hall-of-Fame coach, Hall-of-Fame player, but he's in the Hall of Fame, and a future Hall-of-Fame player in Luka Doncic, so they won't quit.

But you can instill a lot of doubt with coming out and winning this game and we knew that. We came out with a certain intensely level and focus level that it would take to come on the road and still won. We did that tonight and now the mindset changes to coming out and taking care of our business this next game. But we kind of wanted to go all in on this one for sure because we felt like it was a game that if we come out and play our game, we should win.

Q. What have you seen from Andrew tonight?

DRAYMOND GREEN: It's the same thing been seeing all playoffs, taking on the challenge of guarding guys, he's been taking on this challenge for the last three games in this series and guarding Luka. And then on offensive end, he's being aggressive, he's attacking the rim, he's knocking the shot down, he's coming up with extra possessions, offensive boards. He's been aggressive all around all playoffs and it's been great to see it and it's obviously been huge for our team.

Q. You love playoff basketball and it takes your game to another level. Have you seen the same thing with Andrew arriving in this tense environment that is the postseason?

DRAYMOND GREEN: 100 percent. That's a guy that's been criticized for being lackadaisical, and the beat goes on, you know, we've heard it all, and yet on the biggest stage, he's come through. I always said, no one talks about teams that guys are on or organizations that guys are in. No one ever talks about that. It's always the player's fault. You know, he's showing that I'm not far off when I say that. So you know, it's great to see. Absolutely amazing to see him pick up his level of play.

You know, he was like this at the beginning of the season, which is why he became an All-Star and then he kind of hit a little lull there after All-Star, which is normal, especially after your first All-Star Game. You know, then he's picked it back up and it's been absolutely amazing for us as a team and for him as a player.

Q. You played a lot of playoff games with Steph Curry. Do you notice anything different now compared to how he played early on?

DRAYMOND GREEN: He's being extremely, extremely aggressive, and that's what we need. I think he's always been aggressive. I don't really see any difference other than maturity. You know what they expect now. You know how to win. You know all of these things.

So I think the biggest thing I see is maturity, just being ready and knowing what it takes in these situations.

Q. Your thought of the defensive game plan in this series?


Q. Yeah, yours.

DRAYMOND GREEN: I think it's been incredible. I think we're making Luka work, we don't -- you know we don't want to just fall into switches. That's what they want. So I think our coaching staff did an incredible job, as they always do. I told y'all before, I have never gone into a playoff game feeling like I wasn't prepared or another team was better prepared than us. Our coaching staff continues to do an amazing job, and equally as important, guys are following the game plan. Obviously, we have had breakdowns here and there and that's going to happen, but guys are following the game plan and sticking to it, and that's why we're in the position we're in, up 3-0 and chance to close it out Tuesday.

Q. Do you feel like this is the most you guys have ever switched defenses? Seems like possession-to-possession, it's something different at times.

DRAYMOND GREEN: I think so. We went through that some during the season and practiced it. But it's been really on the fly in these playoffs and got to give credit to Mike Brown on that. When you're playing against a guy like Luka, you just never want to give him a steady diet of anything. You can pick what you think is the absolute best coverage against a guy and you keep doing that, say it works and it works and it works, if you keep doing it, a guy like that, he's going to figure it out. You want to try to keep him off balance and I think we've done a pretty good job of it.

Q. How challenging is that from a player perspective to keep looking over the sideline, keep figuring out what you're in?

DRAYMOND GREEN: You know, we try to designate a guy or two to kind of look over at Mike on the way back every time because he's changing the calls. And so like I said, it's something that we've practiced all year where he'll come to myself, he'll come to Otto, he'll come to Andre when Andre was playing and say, hey, you got to look at me because I'm changing defenses.

And so you know, it's kind of like a defensive coordinator sending a signal to a middle linebacker and they are sending the signal on to the guy. So it's been effective for us. You know, it's a weapon in our arsenal.

Q. With your team one win away from the NBA Finals and the Mavericks one loss away from elimination, what kind of game are you expecting on Tuesday night?

DRAYMOND GREEN: It's going to be a very hard game. No one gets to the Conference Finals and quits, never happens. Up 3-0, up 3-1, whatever. No one ever quits. We're not expecting them to come out and quit. We are expecting them to come out and put their best foot forward. Ultimately if we put our best forward, we give ourselves a chance to win the game.

But being one win away from the Finals means absolutely nothing. It just means that. It means you have to win one more game and we have to make sure we come in with an even better focus than we did tonight, which was incredible. Closeout games are always the toughest. We have to come out and win the game, they are not going to give it to us.

Q. Your thoughts on Andrew's dunk?

DRAYMOND GREEN: Absolutely incredible. He's been attacking like that. That's always our battle cry to him, forget laying the ball up, go dunk. He's been attacking like that all playoffs. He got a couple posters these playoffs. That one was on Luka, so it just means more. When you get a poster on a superstar like that, it means just a little bit more. So it was incredible.

Q. Do you get a sense of joy, a little more joy, when you win a challenge like that, a coach's challenge?

DRAYMOND GREEN: Absolutely. But I didn't think it was a foul in the first place live. So to win a challenge and know the play stands -- like we saw Anthony Edwards dunk this year and it got called off and I thought that should have been a block as well, or no call, because he kind of jumped over the guy.

We saw that and you don't see that play much because it didn't count, so it would have been a shame to see that one not count. So I'm happy they got it right.

Q. I know you're in the middle of the competition and it's hard to think about the big picture, but when you're going on a run like you did to start the game or even to close the first half, are you thinking this is what a championship team plays like?

DRAYMOND GREEN: 100 percent. We knew we had to come out and start this game off right, and kind of seize control, not come out frantic, not come out turning the ball over. Just come out and be solid. To be able to say that's what we wanted to do and actually do it, like that was another step of growth for this team because although we have been saying it, we haven't been able to do that.

And to actually come out and guys be locked in from the start to the -- from the start to the finish, I think that was a huge step in this team's growth.

Q. Similar to the past championship teams?

DRAYMOND GREEN: Everyone's different. This team is totally different than any championship team we've ever had. Honestly it doesn't. It feels totally different. You appreciate each journey for what that journey brings and the challenges that it brings. But it doesn't feel the same. It feels a lot different.

Q. I've got to ask you about that big sportsmanship we saw from you today when you backed up into Luka today, everything is on the line, every second counts but you found a way to help him stand up.

DRAYMOND GREEN: I appreciate you asking me that. Everybody think I'm a bad person.

No, I think I stepped on his foot or something which made him fall. If I just take off running, to me that feels cheap. I hate cheap stuff on the basketball court. Like help him up. I made him fall, so I should help him up. Sometimes it's bigger than the next play, and I got a lot of respect for Luka and a lot of love and appreciation for his game.

So if I knew I influenced him falling, I think it's just the right thing to do to help him up. If he doesn't want the help, then that's another story, but I'll at least try to help him up and you know, it was good.

Q. Before this series, there was a lot of talk about this was changing of the point guard, Luka taking over from Steph. Do you think that was any motivation to Steph that he was being written off a little bit and did you see Luka shimmy when he hit that three?

DRAYMOND GREEN: Of course, he's a competitor. I saw the shimmy and it's to be expected. Steph was in the area. Steph shimmied on them, of course, you expect that.

But as far as the talk before the series, I didn't even see it or notice it. I'm not sure if Steph saw it or noticed it. At this point you don't need any more motivation other than this team is standing in the way of getting back in the NBA Finals. For an organization, for a group of guys that's been counted out and said we were done and stick a fork in them, send them to their deathbed, that's enough motivation in itself.

Now, as a competitor, if you see that, of course it's going to motivate you. You know, if someone is saying, oh, this guy is next, it's his turn now, you're going to have something to say about that if possible, and Steph is more than capable of having something to say about it and he's showing that. But Luka's incredible, and you know, his time is now. His time is next. His time, like, that's a great player who is going to be great for a long time.

I don't see it as any changing of guard or anything like that. They are both incredible players. We get so caught up in this sport of trying to make one guy the person, this guy or that guy, as opposed to appreciating everyone's greatness. I happen to be someone who appreciates individual's greatness for themselves. I don't need to compare them and say, it's him now.

No, he's great and he's great, and just appreciate and watching them both because as we know, we all got an expiration date in this league.

So I just appreciate the guys for what they bring when they are bringing it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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