Golden State Warriors: The Draymond Green dilemma

SAN ANTONIO, TX - MARCH 18: Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors gets congratulations from Draymond Green #23 after making a basket against the San Antonio Spurs at AT&T Center on March 18, 2019 in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that , by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images)
SAN ANTONIO, TX - MARCH 18: Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors gets congratulations from Draymond Green #23 after making a basket against the San Antonio Spurs at AT&T Center on March 18, 2019 in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that , by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images) /
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The Golden State Warriors have a problem on their hands and Draymond Green might be the one at fault.

For many years, Draymond Green has been a key member of the Golden State Warriors. His defensive impact, as well as offensive versatility, made him one of the team’s most important players. Now, it seems like he is holding them back.

In years past, Draymond was able to open up the floor for Golden State. He was never an elite shooter, but he could consistently hit 1-2 shots from deep a game. This was small but it was enough to force opposing defenses to respect his jump shot and thus they had to close out on him.

This was huge for the Dubs offense as it gave them the ability to stretch the defense. More space on offense means off-ball screens and movement becomes even more deadly. As a result, Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant could all find easy buckets by simply moving off of the ball.

Furthermore, the pick-and-roll was deadly for Golden State. Opposing teams didn’t have many options when trying to defend the Dubs in those situations and Green’s playmaking/shooting ability made this play so potent.

In shocking fashion, Green’s 3-point shot has completely vanished. With it has gone the effectiveness of the Warriors pick-and-roll.

Green is shooting a woeful 26.5 percent from deep this season. It has gotten so bad that he often passes up wide open opportunities to shoot. Now that the rest of the NBA has realized this, they can now use Draymond’s defender as an extra man to blitz the ball handler during pick-and-roll scenario’s.

The Warriors recent game versus the San Antonio Spurs is a great example of this dilemma. With the game on the line in the 4th quarter, the Spurs were able to shut down multiple attempts to get Curry/Thompson open. This is because they took Draymond’s defender and used him to disrupt the off-ball movement.

This has put the Dubs in a strange position. Draymond is still one of the team’s best defenders but he is becoming a liability on offense. It will be very interesting to see what the Dubs decide to do in the playoffs with this issue.