Draymond, Kerr Explains Dubs’ Unique Strategy for Defending Russ originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
Not only are the Warriors back in the third quarter with their 115-91 win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday at Chase Center, but Golden State also unveiled a new strategy to defend Russell Westbrook: Leave him as open as possible.
Speaking to reporters after the game, Warriors coach Steve Kerr explained why he dropped Draymond Green so far from the former NBA MVP.
“Draymond is, I think, the best centerfielder in the league,” said Kerr. “I mean, there’s no one who can foul the track like he can and just be ready for whatever happens, help wherever he needs to help, and then come in and rebound.”
Kerr also made it a point to praise Donte DiVincenzo and Klay Thompson for their combined efforts in rebounding the ball and influencing the game in that way.
“Between Draymond and [Kevon Looney] leading the defence, our guards getting back on the glass, defending for the most part with no fouls and just staying solid, I think we’re finding something,” Kerr added.
After the Warriors’ new defense plan went viral, Green revealed how the process of coming up with that unique game plan came about.
“…Coach texted me yesterday…and he hinted that would be the game plan,” Green said. “And then we went through it in a shootaround this morning and tried to get everyone to understand the concept. We want to do that.”
The Warriors defensive ace also explained that the game plan worked because it was in Westbrook’s head.
“We made Russ miss some shots, but I think when you have a game plan like that… what that does to you mentally is hard,” Green continued. “And I think it was more the mental than his shot.
“And so I thought we did a good job of sticking to the game plan and we could cloud the game for them on the defensive end and that ended up working for us.”
Westbrook has never been much of a threat, but Thursday’s game proved the importance of developing a three-point shot in today’s NBA.
The former MVP scored eight points on 3-of-12 shots from the field, missing all five of his shots from outside the arc.
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With how the Warriors have changed basketball over the past decade, it makes sense that they continue to find ways to change the game.
And Thursday perhaps showed an effective way to slow down the revamped Clippers: by leaving Westbrook as open as possible.
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