That was close. The absence of Klay Thompson, and the continued absence of starting small forward, Harrison Barnes, opened up some holes in the Warriors attack on Friday night, and the Celtics took advantage, especially with man bun devotee Kelly Olynyk lighting it up with team-high 28 and five other players cracking double digits in their double OT thriller against the still-undefeated Dubs. But Steph was Steph, and Draymond Green continued to act as their do-everything big man, who isn’t really that big.
Dray scored 24 points on a solid 8-of-20 from the field — something that’s not a huge part of his game, but was forced with the absence of Klay and all the additional 10 minutes of free basketball at the
TD Bank Garden.
He added 11 rebounds, eight assists, five steals and five blocks, in a gargantuan effort to extend their legendary winning streak. That’s a 5×5 — five or more points, assist, rebounds, steals and blocks. The last 5×5 was Nicolas Batum back in December of 2012, so it’s pretty rare.
But his preeminence among his peers is even more stark with this next factoid. Dray joins Dream and Derrick Coleman — who also did it in 1993 — as the only players with at least 20 points, 10 rebounds, five assists, five steals and five blocks over the last 40 years.
Dray knew it, too, saying after the game that he’d “never been a part of that club.”
Green is just 6’6, but he can guard centers — he took his turn banging with Marc Gasol in the Conference Semifinals last year — and point guards, acting as the personification of the NBA’s increasingly position-less personnel. He’s also perfect for a Warriors defense that switches almost everything, but also uses him as a center in that dominant small-ball lineup (Green, Barnes, Iggy, Klay, Steph) toward the end of games.
Reserve Shaun Livingston — himself no slouch as an equally-as-positionless 6’7 backup point guard — summed it up to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today:
“It’s a whole other thing when they start talking about looking for the next Draymond Green,” he said. “That just lets you know. You can’t find a guy like that. He’s a winner. He makes winning plays.”