Discover more from Dub Nation HQ
Postgame: Kings put Warriors on the ropes, Green ejected
First time in their careers that the core is down 0-2 in a playoff series
There was another late opportunity with a Wiggins three that went off the side of the backboard. An astonishing parade of boneheaded turnovers as the Golden State Warriors worked their way to 22 turnovers on the night. In an ironic twist, the Warriors aren’t too small any more, now they’re too slow. 26 fouls.
That works out to a turnover rate of almost 22% - meaning the team ended around a fifth of their possessions by coughing it up. And as it was in the first game, the Warriors got outworked in the paint by the Kings. They lost it by 16 points in game one, and then by 14 points tonight. Again, Sacramento dominated the offensive glass.
But the biggest deal is the ejection of Draymond Green. He was assessed a Flagrant 2 and ejected on a play that will be given the Zapruder film treatment over the next couple of days… years maybe.
Sabonis slid in and took a charge against Curry that was barely overturned. Then there was another play where he ricocheted off Green out of bounds (also overturned). But the play that may have broken the series wide open occurred with him laying on the court.
With seven minutes or so left in the game, the Kings missed a short runner that rimmed out. In the ensuing scrum, Klay Thompson and Sabonis went down in a heap. Sabonis makes the veteran Chris Paul-esque decision to grab Green’s leg with two arms in a sort of sleeper hold. Green, trying to step over Sabonis cannot. His foot - still firmly wrapped in a two-armed embrace by Sabonis) comes down instead in the chest of Sabonis. Refs whistle.
The feeling of dread blooms up immediately.
I’m probably not alone in the flashbacks that blossomed into my imagination as we waited for the results of the replay review to come back. Obviously, there would be zero benefit of doubt applied here. Equally obvious is that this ejection will come with a media circus and a strong potential for league intervention. Really solid veteran play by Sabonis to put Green’s ankle in a sleeper hold, it may well have laid the dynasty out too.
Green, in his postgame availability said that the refs indicted the flagrant foul was because he “stomped down too hard.” Which is fair enough, but ignores the causality of the whole chain of events.
The series swings back to San Francisco down 0-2. Gambling on taking a ton of threes, getting blitzed constantly by quicker players, and now with Green potentially being held out, this is it. That’s about all the slack the Warriors had to give. It’s do or die on Thursday.
Damn that beam.