Draymond Green delivers classic answer on game-sealing steal vs. Nuggets

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Draymond's signature answer on game-sealing steal vs. Joker originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

When the game is on the line, Draymond Green lives for the big moments.

He came up clutch for the Warriors in their 118-113 Game 3 win over the Denver Nuggets at Ball Arena on Thursday night, essentially sealing Golden State’s third win of the opening-round NBA playoff series with a fourth-quarter steal that left Nikola Jokić in the dust.

During a postgame interview from the court on NBC Sports Bay Area, Green broke down how he was able to play the ultimate trick on Joker.

It wasn’t a perfect night by any means for Green and the rest of his teammates, who were confronted with a close contest through four quarters after two dominant victories to start the series. Green had trouble recovering on the pick-and-roll all night, he said, and was fooled by several ball fakes throughout the course of the game.

“Coach [Steve] Kerr got at me that last time. I just knew I had to stay down,” Green said of his game-changing steal. “I had to make [Jokić] go through me. I think the whole series, the first couple games, I was making him go through me. Tonight, I gave him a lot of angles.

“But when the money on the line, I don’t like when people go at me for all the marbles. I hate that.”

That being said, Jokić probably was out of luck when it came to the person he had to try and challenge for a clutch shot. With the Warriors up 116-111, every possession was a dire situation for the Nuggets and Green stood in his way.

Green stole the ball away from Joker with 35 seconds left to protect Golden State’s two-possession lead -- and for all the marbles, some might say.

The high-energy matchup between Green and Jokić has provided plenty of entertainment throughout the series. After Jokić didn’t quite live up to Green’s expectations that he would come into Game 2 with a vengeance, he erupted for a game-high 37 points on Thursday and made life difficult for the Warriors.

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Still, even after being outscored 30-18 in the fourth quarter, Green knew the Dubs could pull it together to close out the game and head into Game 4 with a 3-0 lead.

“... I told the guys before the fourth, ‘Just get out of here with a win,’” Green said. “It’s the playoffs. It don’t matter how it looks sometimes. Take the first two, look great … For the third one, it doesn’t matter. You just got to get the win. We stuck with it.”