Draymond Green owes Golden State Warriors after loss to Hawks

With teammates falling around him, a roster with little depth at the power-forward and center positions, and an underwhelming record that’s provided little leeway to allow rest, Draymond Green has bore quite the workload for the Golden State Warriors this season.

Yet Green was absent for the Warriors’ latest loss in Atlanta, with the Warriors going down 127-119 in their tenth consecutive road loss. Stephen Curry went for another 31 points and Golden State had six double-digit scorers, but they committed seven more turnovers than Atlanta and shot just 27.5% from three-point range.

An unnecessary suspension should motivate Draymond Green ahead of the Golden State Warriors visit to Memphis to face the Grizzlies on Saturday.

The Warriors have experienced their fare share of player availability issues this season, almost all of which have come through sheer bad luck. Curry has had two significant periods out with injury, and his fellow All-Star from last season, Andrew Wiggins, has also faced injury and is currently out indefinitely dealing with personal matters.

Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green received his 16th technical foul against the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Still in a genuine fight for a playoff position, the Warriors can ill-afford absences only they themselves manufacture. Green always plays on the edge, it’s the reason he’s become a four-time champion and future Hall of Famer. But throughout his illustrious career, the former Defensive Player of the Year has often cost his team through ill-discipline.

Wednesday was another example — he knew he was one technical foul away from being suspended for a crucial game late in the season. The technical came though, leaving Golden State without Green for their clash in Atlanta. In hindsight, an active Green may have been the difference between a win and a loss on Friday.

It seems to be a common theme in the Warriors’ season. There not exponentially better than many teams, meaning the small things all of a sudden become difference-makers. Not that Green’s absent is small, though it does get exaggerated by the position Golden State find themselves in.

Kevon Looney took on the extra workload against the Hawks, battling manfully with 18 points, 16 rebounds and four blocks. But he needed help, and his frontcourt teammate wasn’t there to assist. In Green’s absence, Anthony Lamb returned and played over 21 minutes yet was an equal game low -11 in plus/minus.

With his teammates now preparing for the second night of a back-to-back in Memphis, a slightly refreshed Green should be more motivated than ever to make amends for his unforced absence on Friday.