Saturday, April 20 2024

Draymond Green repeatedly left Jaylen Brown open from the perimeter on Sunday.

Brown repeatedly made Green and the Golden State Warriors pay.

It turns out that the wide open shots were part of an intentional defensive strategy by the Warriors that failed emphatically in a 140-88 Celtics win. Green and head coach Steve Kerr both discussed said strategy postgame. Brown expressed his approval after the Warriors laid it out.

Draymond Green let Jaylen Brown shoot

Brown scored a game-high 29 points while shooting 11 of 19 from the field and 5 of 10 from 3-point range. He would have surely scored more, but the Celtics pulled their starters with 7:16 remaining in the third quarter while holding a 99-48 lead. Brown needed just 22 minutes to reach his tally.

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The Celtics All-Star scored 3-pointers on three consecutive Celtics possessions that sparked a 14-0 Boston run. The run turned a 21-21 first-quarter tie into a 35-21 Celtics lead lead. On each of those 3-pointers — one from the left corner and two from the top of the key — Green sagged off Brown to prioritize closing off driving lanes. Each time, Green closed in to challenge Brown’s shot. Each time, he was too late and too far away.

Brown’s third three of that run extended a Boston lead to 30-21, and the Warriors never recovered. Boston ended the half on a 61-17 run to take an 82-38 lead into the break.

Draymond: Strategy to lay off Brown was a last-minute decision

After the game, Green admitted to reporters that the Warriors intentionally left Brown open. He said that the strategy was a last-minute addition to the Golden State game plan.

“I don’t think we really played a full defensive strategy,” Green told reporters. … “We implemented our strategy like 15 minutes before we left the locker room. I don’t necessarily think we put together a full defensive strategy. …

“It didn’t work. Oh, well. We move on. I thought it was fun to try. I was actually all for it. Lets try, and see if it works. If it don’t, oh well. If it does, we’ve found something. It didn’t work. Oh well, we move on.”

Kerr: Warriors wanted Green to protect the paint

Kerr was also asked about the decision to sag off Brown on the perimeter.

“You try different things,” Kerr told reporters. “You have to pick your matchups. We wanted Draymond to be able to help on drives and make sure that we weren’t giving up easy stuff in the paint.

“The killer was the transition from the beginning all the way to the end. They got 42 transition points. You’re not winning a game with that kind of defensive — or lack of defensive awareness.”

The Warriors invited Jaylen Brown to shoot by intentionally leaving him wide open on the perimeter on Sunday. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)The Warriors invited Jaylen Brown to shoot by intentionally leaving him wide open on the perimeter on Sunday. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

The Warriors invited Jaylen Brown to shoot by intentionally leaving him wide open on the perimeter on Sunday. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Jaylen Brown responds

Brown saw Kerr’s explanation, and expressed his approval on social media.

Brown’s not an elite 3-point shooter. An All-Star who averages 22.3 points per game who’s shot 36.3% for his career from long-distance, he’s more than capable. Leaving a professional scorer as wide open as the screenshots below demonstrate is an invitation akin to shooting practice.

Brown gladly accepted the invitation and made the Warriors pay in one of the season’s most lopsided outcomes.

Source: Yahoo Sports

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