Kerr defends Draymond's ‘brilliant' Game 4 performance


Steve Kerr doesn’t feel the need to issue a challenge to Draymond Green ahead of Game 5, thanks in part to a defensive performance during the NBA Finals on Friday night that the Warriors coach called “brilliant.”

The Golden State veteran has been subjected to plenty of criticism across the first four games in the best-of-seven series with the Boston Celtics, but Kerr came to his defense while speaking to reporters on Sunday.

“Draymond’s Draymond,” Kerr reminded the room after saying he didn’t believe Green needed any extra motivation from him going forward. “He’s going to bring it every night, and I think that’s something that maybe got lost the other night is how good he was, you know, down the stretch.”

Green put up back-to-back two-point performances during Games 3 and 4, but after being pulled by Kerr in the fourth quarter of the Warriors’ 107-97 win at TD Garden on Friday, he turned things around.

He sat on the bench for four minutes and then periodically returned to the court for Golden State in crunch time, grabbing three rebounds and two assists. His pair of dishes resulted in five key points for the Warriors during that final run, and they outscored the Celtics 10-3 after Green returned from his brief hiatus to run away with the lead.

And to Kerr, two points from Green is just fine when he contributes in countless other ways.

“He ends up the game with four steals, brilliant defensively,” Kerr continued. “He did what we needed to do to win the game.

“Everybody’s locked in on scoring. Scoring has always been kind of the last thing that we need from him. We need his defense, his energy, his force, his competitiveness. And down the stretch of the game, he made huge plays at both ends.”

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With all eyes on Green, it has to feel good knowing his coach has his back.

And come Game 5 at Chase Center on Monday, Kerr’s support could be the motivation Green might not need but could still benefit from.

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