Warrior Decides To Be The Big Ignoring Famous Small Balls To Advance To Western Conference Finals


San Francisco — Mike Brown looked worriedly at one of his soldiers, Kevon Looney, over the past six seasons, who did everything he asked for with little or no fanfare in the Golden State Warriors franchise full of highlights and glory. Looney, who rarely plays in the stretch for more than 6-7 minutes, was hitting a career-high 35 in the game, hitting a 17-minute streak.

“I kept looking at him after the first five times. [minutes] He looked like he was dying. Acting Mike Brown Warriors said, “The next two looked worse. After that, every minute, ‘Gee, wait. Rune, wait.’ “

Looney not only survived but thrived in the final quarter of Game 6’s 110-96 win over Memphis Grizzlies on Friday night, and has symbolized the game’s theme by sending the Warriors to the Western Conference Finals for the first time since 2019. .

Just before the last buzzer sounded, Mike Brown walked along the sidelines and along the lines of his fellow assistant coaches. He hugged Kenny Atkinson. He hugged Bruce Fraser. He hugged Chris DeMarco.

Brown, who was recently nominated as head coach of the Sacramento Kings, took over with Steve Kerr due to health and safety regulations, but fell into the crosshairs of the NBA Twitterati just 48 hours ago. A humiliating Game 5 took place at the hands of the Grizzlies, rarely seen in the NBA playoffs.

But by the end of Game 6, the Warriors overpowered the annoying young, fearless, and tenacious Grizzlies, largely due to major adjustments from Brown, the coaching staff, and even the players.

Much of the story during and shortly after the Warriors’ first round victory over the Denver Nuggets was a new version of the famous Warriors smallball lineup. Stephen Curry, Jordan Poole, Klay Thompson, Andrew Wiggins and Draymond Green seemed unmatched in their brief time together, with many suggesting that the unit should start or at least earn more time for the rest of the playoffs. I did.

However, the lineup failed against the Grizzlies. Continue. When Star Grizzlies guard Ja Morant was injured in Game 3 and Memphis started men’s climber Steven Adams in Game 4 and 5, the Warriors’ attack looked as futile as this season. The small ball lineup, which will overwhelm the defense and spark Golden State’s championship hopes, was only 94.5 points per 100 possessions over 25 minutes of the series.

“We really did realize when Ja fell. [Game 5]We have to make adjustments almost as if we are starting a completely different series. “It’s because we’re a completely different team from the last three games,” Green said.

So the Warriors made the decision for Game 6. Will you go small to take advantage of the Adams’ lack of foot speed, or will you go big for their size? A few minutes before the tee off, the starting lineup was announced and Looney was chosen to play Adams.

It was a collective decision that stemmed from a conversation that began near the end of the horrific explosion that occurred in Memphis on Wednesday. Brown spoke with Curry and Green, and they both agreed that Rooney was the one he wanted to be with. Not only does he bring size and physique, he’s one of the key players left in the Warriors’ Finals. Kerr, who could be Looney’s biggest fan in the world outside of his family, eventually agreed to the decision.

Regarding choosing Looney as a starting pitcher in Game 6, Green said: “If you look at the last eight quarters before this game, we have an edge in seven of them. Start the game and don’t worry too much about our goals. Don’t… they made it clear they were going to beat us and they were doing well. Things changed with Loon back into the starting lineup.”

For the third game in a row, the Warriors’ offense struggled all night long. Thompson made several successes while scoring a team best of 30 points, but Curry and Poole were unable to throw the ball into the water during the good times of the first three quarters. Aside from their shooting struggles, the Warriors have fallen into the infamous habit of throwing the ball to other teams or out of bounds, recording 16 turnovers in the first three quarters.

So how did they survive when Chase Center’s No. 1 grizzly winger Dylan Brooks was playing arguably the best game of his life? The Warriors have grown.

Looney collected 11 rebounds in the first quarter alone and finished with an outrageous 22 boards the night, half of which were threats from jumps on the attack glass. He also helped nullify Adams, who recorded just one offensive rebound in the game. The Warriors beat the Grizzlies in the paint division, an area where Memphis dominated all seasons.

Rooney wasn’t the only one receiving the message. Green posted 15 rebounds. Wiggins had 11 and Thompson had 8. Curry picked seven. Overall, the Warriors collected a monumental 70 rebounds, including 25 from attack glass. They played aggressively and ugly for most of the night, but the Warriors’ grit, defense and determination on the board led them to the conference finals.

“Winning the game of rebound and the game of ownership gives ourselves a chance to win the game,” Brown said. “It’s amazing against a team of that size and athleticism.”

Brown was right. In the end, Curry continued the attack with 11 points in the fourth quarter and 10 points by Wiggins. Thompson’s eighth three-point shot with less than three minutes left sealed the game and the series.

We can argue all day about whether the Warriors consider what they’ve shown in the playoffs so far worthy of a real title race, but they showed what was essential to the championship formula in Friday night’s final. That’s adaptability. The more cards the coach has to play (big or brown), the more likely he is to get an answer to whatever problem he faces. And needless to say, either the Phoenix Suns or the Dallas Mavericks are going to cause huge problems.

But the plans will come later. Thompson and Curry say they will watch Game 7 between the Suns and the Mavericks on Sunday to get a feel for their next opponent and as fans of the NBA. In the meantime, they will celebrate with a new appreciation of the once-ceremonial Western Conference Finals marina.

“It’s incredible to know what we’ve been through in the last two years,” Curry said on Friday night. “It’s a pretty cool vibe when you figure it out as a group, as I’ve never been with this group before. It’s definitely special. Never take it for granted. Understand it. That’s all.”



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