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Warrior Wonder: Draymond Green steamrolls over Blake Griffin’s dark horse MVP candidacy

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Draymond spearheads Warriors signature win by stonewalling Clippers best player

Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Clippers Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The new look, new attitude Los Angeles Clippers, led by a dark horse MVP candidate, were primed to make a statement on their home floor against the seemingly vulnerable Golden State Warriors.

LOL.

The brand new Clippers were beaten from pillar to post in their own building, losing 141 to 113 to their golden overlords.

I was ready to give the Warrior Wonder to Stephen Curry for his 31 points, including a soul snatching buzzer beater over Austin Rivers to end the third quarter and the 2x MVP’s night (31 points in 30 min?!).

But then I took another gander at the pregame preview for the Warriors battle with the Clips by GSoM’s own scribe Greg Thomas. He took a quick dive into the departure of Clippers elite point guard Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets making L.A. a rare anachronism in today’s small ball game: their best player is a power forward. His name is Blake Griffin, the slam dunk monster (ask Rudy Gobert) for whom respected NBA pundits are feverishly building up an early MVP case for.

“The Blake Show” came into the Staples Center last night averaging a 24.8 points, 9.6 rebounds, and 4.4 assists on 48% shooting from the field.

D.P.O.Y Activated

Just as Greg’s preview rightly predicted, the Defensive Player of the Year Draymond Green took on the challenge of going toe to toe with the Clippers best player. As has been the recent case in the “rivalry”, Dray stole the show and left the arena with Griffin’s still beating heart in his hand.

Blake Griffin was shackled by the Warriors defensive leader to 16 points on 4 of 10 shooting from the field. Griffin had more turnovers (4) than rebounds (3). His plus/minus was -23 for the game. Draymond is getting serious respect this evening for locking Griffin’s game into a freezing meat locker behind one of the Staples Center’s concessions stands.

Draymond’s dangerously twitchy hands and stout positioning stymied the muscle-bound Kia spokesman. Dray had the cunning foot work to cut off Griffin’s first steps, and the low center of gravity to aggressively rebuff the brawnier Clipper from getting anywhere deep in the paint. It was like watching a husky bouncer in front of a bar use expert technique in preventing a belligerently drunk patron from returning back inside the establishment for another Moscow Mule.

Dray’s offensive rebirth

On the other end, Draymond played with his usual quick-thinking intelligence. He attacked the heart of the defense with the same vigor with which he kept Griffin out of the painted area. When the defense collapsed, Dray generated good looks with crisp passing.

When the defense panicked and decided to instead stay glued to the Dubs lethal shooters on the perimeter, Dray attacked the open gaps in the soft middle for layups and free throws.

His aggressive offensive mentality paid off in the box score as he was rewarded with eight free throw attempts, knocking down five. He shot 62% from the field on 5 of 8 shooting, 1 of 2 from downtown. All this would tally up to a season high 16 points for the Warriors vocal leader. He even chipped in nine rebounds.

In addition, Dray was one of three Warriors starters with a team high six assists. He showed off his high level floor vision and cute passing with some highlight reel lobs to JaVale McGee.

Dray, on the road of a second night of a back to back, thoroughly bullied and outsmarted Griffin to 16 points, 9 boards, and 6 dimes with just 2 turnovers. Is it possible to kill someone’s MVP candidacy in October? If it is, Draymond just did it. If that doesn’t make him your Warriors Wonder for the evening, I’m not sure what will.

Poll

Who was the Warrior Wonder for the Warriors’ beatdown of the Clippers?

This poll is closed

  • 1%
    Zaza Pachulia
    (27 votes)
  • 39%
    Draymond Green
    (735 votes)
  • 1%
    Kevin Durant
    (29 votes)
  • 0%
    Klay Thompson
    (13 votes)
  • 45%
    Steph Curry
    (854 votes)
  • 0%
    Shaun Livingston
    (10 votes)
  • 0%
    Andre Iguodala
    (2 votes)
  • 5%
    Jordan Bell
    (103 votes)
  • 0%
    Nick Young
    (5 votes)
  • 1%
    JaVale McGee
    (33 votes)
  • 0%
    Omri Casspi
    (14 votes)
  • 1%
    Patrick McCaw
    (20 votes)
  • 0%
    David West
    (12 votes)
1857 votes total Vote Now