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Draymond reveals which Warrior made biggest shot of Finals originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
There were several moments throughout the NBA Finals that proved key in helping the Warriors beat the Boston Celtics to earn their fourth championship in eight seasons.
But if you ask Draymond Green, there’s one pivotal shot that stands out above the rest.
On the latest episode of “The Draymond Green Show,” which came out on Sunday, the Golden State veteran revealed which dagger he believes was the series’ deadliest -- and it wasn’t made by Finals MVP Steph Curry.
“The biggest shot of the series was Jordan Poole’s shot before the end of quarter number three in Game 5 where he banked the three in,” Green said.
Dub Nation certainly remembers which shot Green was referring to. Not only was the banked-in three Poole’s second third quarter buzzer-beater of the Finals, but it served as a deflating disruption to a Celtics offense looking to come back and break the series tie with a Game 5 win.
“Why was that the biggest shot of the series?” Green continued. “The reason that was the biggest shot of the series was because they had fought back in the third quarter, which we had dominated third quarters.
“They fought back in that third quarter, and when they fought back, they had taken the lead, and Jordan had the shot and we went up one going into the fourth quarter.”
Up until that shot, Boston had clawed their way back from a 51-39 deficit at the start of the third quarter to take a 74-72 lead over Golden State.
But by the start of the game’s final 12 minutes, Poole’s dastardly three to end the third put the Warriors back on top despite the Celtics’ hard-fought effort. It had to be a tough pill for Boston to swallow, and the shot also came on the perfect night as Curry went the entire game without making a 3-pointer of his own.
“And I know to most people it’s like, ‘But they only up one, no big deal. It’s right there,’” Green said. “But what that did to them mentally, for them to see, ‘Man, we just had this incredible quarter and we’re going into the fourth quarter down.’ It didn’t matter whether they were down by one point or 10 points.
“To have the quarter that they had to take the lead, and then go into the next quarter down? That, for them, I felt like was a dagger when Jordan hit that shot.”
As a four-time champion himself, Green expanded on the mindset the Celtics might have had after Poole’s buzzer-beater.
“Did they quit after that? No. We went out and we immediately took over the fourth quarter of Game 5,” Green said. “But you just knew like, they didn’t have -- they made the comeback, but they didn’t have enough to get over the hump.
“And if they never took the lead and they’re going into the fourth quarter down one, it’s a totally different mindset. But the fact that they took the lead and then they still went into the fourth quarter down one, I think for them mentally, that was like a gut punch for them.”
Of course, Poole’s gut punch helped the Warriors take Game 5 and go on to win Game 6 -- and another championship ring.
Thanks to young stars like Poole making such impactful plays, the future of the Warriors is bright.
And with an experienced core infused with that talented youth, Green, Poole and Co. will hope to do much of the same next year.