The Golden State Warriors‘ Draymond Green was pleased with the team’s defensive energy against LeBron James and is aware that they need to maintain that same intensity for their next game against the Lakers in Los Angeles. The Warriors managed to beat the Lakers 121-106 in Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinals, allowing them to stay in the running to defend their title despite the unpredictable nature of their season.
Even if Lakers star Anthony Davis is present and clogging up the middle, the Warriors need to maintain their focus. Stephen Curry led the way with 27 points and eight assists, while Andrew Wiggins added 25 points, seven rebounds, and five assists.
The Warriors have rallied in the past, and this core group has come back from 2-0 down to beat Sacramento in the first round of the playoffs. However, Green acknowledges that there is always pressure when you’re a champion, and people are quick to forget what you’ve achieved in the past.
James had 25 points and nine rebounds, while Davis contributed 23 points and nine rebounds before suffering a head injury in the fourth quarter. His status for Game 6 on Friday night is unknown, but the Lakers have won eight consecutive games at home since losing to the Bulls on March 26.
The Warriors are trying to rally from a 3-1 series deficit for only the second time in franchise history and bring Game 7 back to Chase Center on Sunday. Curry beat the halftime buzzer with a 3-pointer, and Green and Wiggins alternated guarding James, while the team tried to take Davis out of rhythm.
The Warriors are 16-4 in Game 5s and 8-2 when facing elimination, including 4-2 at home. They have a 34-12 record in postseason games following a loss.
The Warriors faced a daunting task of trying to save their season and defend their title against the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinals. The Lakers were unbeaten at home this postseason and had won eight consecutive games on their own floor since March.
However, the Warriors came out with great defensive energy and a sense of urgency that allowed them to stave off elimination with a 121-106 victory. Stephen Curry led the way with 27 points and eight assists, while Andrew Wiggins added 25 points, seven rebounds, and five assists. Draymond Green contributed 20 points and 10 rebounds and played tough defense on LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
The Warriors’ defensive mindfulness led to better chances on the offensive end, just as coach Steve Kerr had challenged his team to do. The team had to rally from a 3-1 series deficit for only the second time in franchise history to bring Game 7 back to Chase Center on Sunday.
Curry beat the halftime buzzer with a 3-pointer over Lonnie Walker IV to give the Warriors a 70-59 lead, and they never looked back. They used a combination of players, including Gary Payton II and Jordan Poole, who hit his first 3-pointer since Game 1, to help secure the win.
The Lakers put up a good fight with James and Davis leading the way, but Davis suffered a head injury in the fourth quarter, leaving his status for Game 6 in question. Coach Darvin Ham was encouraged afterward but did not provide details on what evaluation Davis went through once in the locker room. TNT reported that Davis required a wheelchair to go to the locker room.
The Warriors know that they will face a tough challenge in Game 6 in Los Angeles, but they have the championship pedigree and experience to overcome adversity. As Curry said, “I have a lot of confidence we can come back in this series, and until otherwise, we stay in that kind of mindset.”