The Golden State Warriors beat the Denver Nuggets in a Game 5 series-clinching matchup. It wasn’t a pretty win for Golden State, as the nerves to close out this series got the best of the team early in the game. However, the Warriors got out of their funk in the final quarter thanks to clutch plays from Stephen Curry and Gary Payton II to win the game by a score of 102-98. Here are some of the takeaways from the Warriors postgame pressers:
Steve Kerr Discusses the Game
Head Coach Steve Kerr began his postgame presser by giving his congratulations to the Nuggets for a well-fought series. Kerr especially noted the play of Nuggets’ star and MVP candidate Nikola Jokic, saying he is “really happy to not have to worry about him anymore”. He also made sure to mention former Warriors’ center Demarcus Cousins and how happy he is to see him healthy and playing strong again.
Kerr said the Warriors were anxious to close out the series and may have forgotten how difficult closeout games can be due to the team’s 2-year absence from the postseason. He felt that Game 5 turned around for Golden State once they stopped fouling on defense. The Nuggets shot 20 free throws in the first half as opposed to just 9 in the second half. Kerr said this was significant because it kept Denver from setting up their defense while allowing the Warriors to push the pace in their favor.
Here’s what Kerr had to say following the game:
Steve Kerr: “Jokic is ridiculous.”— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) April 28, 2022
Here is his full quote on the Nuggets. Praised DeMarcus Cousins. pic.twitter.com/TNugnGYcCP
Kerr on GP2's growth: "His defense is elite" pic.twitter.com/EfwUyXYiYE— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 28, 2022
"He's built for the playoffs...He's at his best when the games are the most important"— NBA (@NBA) April 28, 2022
Steve Kerr on Draymond Green. pic.twitter.com/2fyfYRPzqR
Asked Steve Kerr after his presser if this is now the regular starting lineup. "I don't know, honestly," he said. "I'm not committed to anything. I think I told you before the playoffs started, we just don't know this team that well because we haven't had everybody together."— Tim Kawakami (@timkawakami) April 28, 2022
Kerr: "We threw Mike Brown's rotation sheet in the furnace right away.— Tim Kawakami (@timkawakami) April 28, 2022
"With Andre's absence and then our shift to the starting lineup, which we haven't started all year, it changed all of the rotations." https://t.co/1caRHqWZ00
Warriors Players Discuss the Game
Curry powered the offense with 30 points which included an 11-2 run that revitalized the Warriors offense late in the 3rd quarter. Although Curry supplied the offense, it was Gary “The Young Glove” Payton who landed the morale-busting haymakers as he hit key shot after key shot with the game winding down in the 4th quarter. During their pressers, all of the Warriors’ players said they knew Payton was going to make an impact in the playoffs as soon as they saw his unique ability to impact the game anytime he was on the court this season.
Here’s what the Warriors players had to say after the game:
Steph on the Dubs’ first playoff series win since 2019:— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 28, 2022
“We still remember how to do it” pic.twitter.com/EIiBgKj7NH
Steph on GP2's heroic Game 5: "It's in his DNA" pic.twitter.com/50LQFg6dAw— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 28, 2022
Klay Thompson on Splash Brother Stephen Curry: "He’s our leader, our longest-tenured player, our MVP. And without him, life is difficult. Steph Curry is one of a kind."— Janie McCauley (@JanieMcCAP) April 28, 2022
Klay led the Dubs with nine rebounds, but he wanted one more pic.twitter.com/gt0T6paZfn— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 28, 2022
Klay Thompson on GP2: “So happy for Gary. So many big shots…. He is such a great athlete. In the playoffs you need guys to step up and it was Gary’s night.”— 95.7 The Game (@957thegame) April 28, 2022
"It's special, it feels a lot more familiar than the last 2 years"— NBA (@NBA) April 28, 2022
Draymond Green on winning a Playoff series with Steph and Klay again. pic.twitter.com/aT686LPD4d
"He was incredible on both ends of the floor... he's worked very very very hard and he's finally gotten his opportunity and he's taking advantage of it and it's great to see"— NBA (@NBA) April 28, 2022
Draymond Green on the play of teammate Gary Payton II pic.twitter.com/nIPhfYkpKN
"It just gives me confidence...that he trusts me out there in big moments"— NBA (@NBA) April 28, 2022
Gary Payton II on Steve Kerr playing him in clutch time. pic.twitter.com/a6g0gSfyrY
GP2 says his dad has been mad at him "probably since high school" for passing up shots pic.twitter.com/332BNvErE1— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 28, 2022
Quote of the Night
The quote of the night belongs to Draymond Green. After the game, Green took the moment to give Jokic his flowers, showing mutual admiration for this year’s projected league MVP.
Draymond has nothing but respect for Jokić pic.twitter.com/8lX8tgjQD5— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 28, 2022
Draymond's message to Jokić: "Thank you for making me better" pic.twitter.com/zXw0ZwLmH5— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 28, 2022
With this victory, the Warriors win the series against the Nuggets 4-1 and advance to the second round of the playoffs. They will now get some well-deserved rest until the conclusion of the Memphis Grizzlies vs. Minnesota Timberwolves matchup.
You can find the full transcripts for Game 5’s postgame pressers here.