Luka Doncic Reacts to Draymond Green’s Clutch Block in Warriors Win Over Mavs

Draymond Green sealed the Golden State Warriors‘ 104-100 win over the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday, April 4, with an emphatic block on Daniel Gafford and a layup on the other end.

The whole Chase Center erupted after Green’s massive block. Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic was left dejected but at the same time, utterly impressed by Green’s pivotal play.

“That block was big,” Doncic told reporters after the game. “We could tie the game there I think. So that block was great for him. He’s a defensive guy. He controls their offense. He leads the guys He had a very big impact.”

DRAYMOND SENT HIM TO ANOTHER DIMENSION 😱 pic.twitter.com/QtknyyKR11

— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) April 3, 2024

It was only Green’s lone block in the game where he scattered 11 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists and 4 steals. But it was the difference-maker.

Key Defensive Play of the Game

Warriors coach Steve Kerr thought Green was going for a foul as Green momentarily left Gafford open underneath the basket as he tried to help defend Kyrie Irving, who made the pass.

“That was probably the key defensive play of the game, just a massive play,” Kerr told reporters. “I thought he was going to go up to try to foul him and he just had the right angle for the block. That was a huge play, and Draymond was brilliant defensively as he has been for a while now. He’s one of the reasons we’ve been able to kind of turn the season around.”

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Had he not blocked Gafford, the Mavericks could have cut the Warriors lead to 98-94 with still 1:48 left. But Green quickly recovered and after his massive block, he saved the ball from going out of bounds and into Klay Thompson‘s hands.

“Draymond is special,” Andrew Wiggins told reporters. “Very special. Defensive mastermind, he’s everywhere. He’s got everyone’s back, that’s what gives everyone else the advantage to just play freely defensively, because you know you got Draymond behind you. You know he’s going to pick up any slack or anything that happens.”

Chris Paul, who is in his 19th NBA season, was more effusive in praise of Green’s clutch block.

“I told Dray, ‘That might be one of the best plays I’ve ever seen in my career, and I’m not exaggerating, man,’ ” Paul said on “Warriors Postgame Live.” “If you just see the heart, somebody like me who likes defense, I can appreciate it. It’s well documented, me and Dray’s relationship before I got here. But it’s something to see night in and night out, the way he competes. He willed us to this win tonight.”

Andrew Wiggins Stepped Up

It was not only Green who shined.

Wiggins also stepped up anew in Jonathan Kuminga‘s absence as the Warriors overcame Doncic’s triple-double and Stephen Curry‘s off night.

Doncic finished with 30 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists for his 20th double-double, trailing only Sacramento Kings All-Star Domantas Sabonis’ 26 and Denver Nuggets’ 2-time MVP Nikola Jokic’s 23 this season. But Wiggins made Doncic work doubly hard for it.

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“It was our defense that got us the win,” Kerr said. “Holding those guys to 100 points is pretty difficult. I thought (Wiggins) was brilliant. He put in so much effort just trying to make Luka work. Luka was amazing as he always is, but that effort really set a tone.”

Curry was held to 13 points on 5 of 18 shooting. But Wiggins carried the scoring load with 23 points, two nights after his 2 of 12 shooting in San Antonio.

Wiggins shot 50% from the field this time with 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal and a block. It was his second 23-point effort and third 20-point game over his last 4 games, which Kuminga missed.

 

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