NBA

Kerr credits Green with willing Warriors to victory as Curry lauds unmatched 'competitive spirit'

By Sports Desk March 29, 2023

Steve Kerr credited Draymond Green with "willing" the Golden State Warriors to victory in their comeback win over the New Orleans Pelicans.

Green scored eight points and provided 13 assists, four turnovers and two steals to help complete a 120-109 turnaround triumph for the reigning NBA champions at Chase Center.

Golden State were trailing by 17 points after a lacklustre first half, but Green sparked the team into life, earning the credit from his coach.

"Draymond willed us to victory tonight," said Kerr. "Just the intensity, the frustration early with the way we were playing.

"Mad at the world, yelling at everybody – their bench, our bench – and frankly, we deserved it."

Green's first spark came late in the second quarter when he picked up his 17th technical foul for a shove on Brandon Ingram.

The pair exchanged words, amongst some shoving, and were issued Ts.

He will be fined $5,000 if the technical foul does not get rescinded over the next 24 hours - which Green thinks it will be - but if it does not, the Warriors forward believes it was worth it.

"It was perfect," said Green. "Perfectly executed. We looked dead those first 18 minutes. We had to find some energy somewhere.

"It wasn't just going to come, especially after losing the game like we did last game [99-96 to Minnesota Timberwolves].

"That can carry over. I felt like it did. I knew we had to do something and do it fast before the game got out of hand."

Green almost picked up another technical foul 20 seconds later after colliding with Herbert Jones but following more shoving and a video review, no Ts were assessed.

"I've got to play with the same intensity I try to play with each and every time I step on the court," added Green.

"I can't worry about that. For me, if I'm going to change my intensity level, then why be out there?"

Following Green's clash with Jones, Stephen Curry got involved in the scrum yelling at Pelicans players and giving some shoves.

"He knows that guys are backing him up," said Curry. "I'm sure [Green] wouldn't go out on an island like that if he didn't have that confidence.

"There are times when I've got to keep him in check and bring him back in when it's turning in the wrong direction in the sense of staying focused on just winning."

The Warriors outscored the Pelicans 74-46 in the second half, shooting 70 per cent to help complete their second-biggest comeback of the season.

Curry scored or assisted half of the points Golden State won after half-time.

Green said: "When I turned it up a notch, [Curry] turned it up another two notches.

"We all hopped in line and followed him, and he was locked in. No one was stopping him."

The Warriors are now sixth in the Western Conference, holding just a half-game advantage over the Timberwolves in seventh with five rounds left of the regular season.

"It feels like we've been in a playoff vibe for a couple of weeks now," said Curry.

"The only difference is you're playing a different team every night. But it's the same kind of adrenaline rush that we're getting. Every game does matter.

"We have a competitive spirit that's unmatched. And it's been that way for a decade."

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