Draymond Green Had The Time Of His Life Roasting Rudy Gobert For Getting Cooked By Nikola Jokic

The Denver Nuggets are one win away from yet another trip to the Western Conference Finals after picking up their third win in a row over the Minnesota Timberwolves. Their Game 5 win was the first time a home team won in the series, and they now send things back to Minnesota, where the atmosphere will be tense.

Game 5 was a Nikola Jokic masterclass, as the three-time MVP put up arguably his best playoff performance ever with 40 points, 13 assists, seven rebounds, and zero turnovers. The Serbian star seemed to delight in giving Rudy Gobert work all night, hitting him with every move you can imagine and never doubling up, showing the four-time DPOY something different on every possession. It was truly incredible to watch and there really wasn’t anything for Gobert to do differently, as Jokic just kept tossing, flipping, floating, and scooping the ball in the basket over, under, around, and through him.

Even though there are no answers for Jokic when he’s cooking like that, the entire point of having Gobert is that he’s supposed to keep the other team from dominating inside. When that doesn’t happen, he is going to shoulder a lot of blame. On Inside the NBA after the game, Draymond Green and Vince Carter were sitting in for Shaq and Charles Barkley, and Green has never been happier to have been called into work in his life than getting to sit on that desk and critique Gobert and the Wolves.

Green saying “the big Frenchman is sitting on that podium, speaking his native language, ‘we, we, we need to do this.’ You, you, you need to get a stop,” is an all-timer. He also called out that Karl-Anthony Towns’ body language leaving the court, limping heavily after playing most of the game (and showing few ill effects visually) after banging knees in the first half, and saying that told him everything he needed to know about Minnesota’s belief in themselves.

There’s an argument to be made that Gobert was one of the two best Wolves on the court in Game 5, as he had 18 points and 11 rebounds (with two steals and two blocks) on 7-of-7 shooting. However, that doesn’t really matter when you’re getting torched on the other end — at halftime, Green borrowed Shaq’s line, calling it “BBQ chicken”— and your reputation is as the best big in the league at keeping teams from scoring at the rim. We’ll see if the Wolves can find something deep down inside to challenge the Nuggets in Game 6, but as Green pointed out, the excuses were already being concocted and he doesn’t expect this series to return to Denver for a Game 7.