When praising Draymond's defense, Kerr explains ‘one of the tricky parts' facing the Rockets


The Rockets are...

...tough to defend.

In the playoffs, they are No. 1 in offensive rating (111.1) and are averaging the fewest turnovers per game (9.7).

To slow down Houston, Draymond Green is going to need to have a big series on the defensive end.

"He kind of quarterbacks our defense. Andre, too," Steve Kerr told reporters on Friday. "They tend to sniff things out before everyone else does. And then if they can communicate it, then they can alert other guys what's coming.

"And now everybody's on the same page. So that's a big part of what we do."

In the playoffs, the Rockets are shooting 40 3-pointers per game -- the most by far (Portland is No. 2 at 32.3 per game).

Outside of Clint Capela and Nene, everybody is a threat (to a certain extent) from beyond the arc.

Because of that, Draymond has to know who he is guarding at all times so he doesn't overhelp and leave capable shooters wide open.

"Draymond is the ultimate helper," Kerr said. "It's one of the reasons we don't love having him on the Mirotic's of the world. We want him on a guy he can help off of.

"One of the tricky parts of this series is they got shooters everywhere. You gotta be careful where you help from."

Back in February, The Athletic's Anthony Slater asked Draymond: "Do you hate guarding stretch shooters that don't handle the ball?"

Draymond's answer: "Yeah, because they just stand there. They just stand there. Like you said, their only reason to be in there is so you can't go help out. It's kinda boring to me. You're just standing there. I like to be in the action. That's boring."

Based on all of this, you can probably expect Draymond to spend most of his time guarding Capela, Luc Mbah a Moute or P.J. Tucker (although Tucker is shooting 46 percent from deep in the playoffs).

There will of course be times where a switch happens and Draymond will be guarding James Harden or Chris Paul in an iso situation.

But ultimately, Draymond wants to play a lot of free safety.

"It's fun. It's really fun," Draymond said. "You just kind of clog up a team's entire offense. I enjoy it."

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller

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