OAKLAND — Of course the Warriors are putting a positive spin on Game 7. There is the fact that home teams win 80 percent of Game 7s. Also, what else do you expect them to say?
“I think if you start out every season and you say we get a Game 7, we get one game at home to win the NBA Championship, I’ll take it every time,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said not long after Game 6. “So I can’t wait for Sunday. I think we’ll be fine. Obviously, Cleveland has played well the last two games, and we’ve got to play better. But I’m confident we will. We’re in a spot that 29 other teams would love to be in.”
Add Draymond Green to that list of guys being positive. He’s been keeping a Finals diary for The Undefeated (well, it’s his words, whether he actually types them or says them) and here is what he said about Game 7:
“It’s tough because you never know what can happen [in Game 7]. But we put ourselves in this position. We got to dig ourselves out. It’s not tough. We got a Game 7 at home. We’re damn good at home. We just have to play with the effort we need to play with. We’ll be just fine.
“I think it will be a great atmosphere. Hopefully, our crowd will be loud and give us that home court edge. But we got to make that happen.
“It’s Game 7 for all the marbles. I’m looking forward to it … We got to impose our will from the jump on the defensive end. They got to feel us. These last two games they haven’t felt us. This is it. I know they will.”
Just one note from me, about “we put ourselves in this position.”
Draymond, you put your team in this position. For anyone who follows basketball, there comes a point in most series where one team knows its beat. They have less talent and/or the matchups don’t work, and they don’t have answers, and they know it. That was Cleveland after the Game 4 loss at home — their body language, their demeanor in the locker room, just the sense around the team from all of us following the series (including Cavs writers that know the team best), it was over. But your inability to keep your hands to yourself — that shot to LeBron James‘ undercarriage, whether you think the punishment was warranted or not — changed everything. That one-game suspension opened the door, the Cavaliers suddenly knew they could win Game 5, then got Game 6 at home. LeBron, who had been playing well already, took his game to a new level.
Now there is a Game 7, and a lot of the responsibility fall on you, Draymond.