The Warriors' 106-105 win over the Toronto Raptors on Sunday night at Chase Center came down to the final possession, and Golden State snuffed out the opposition's Plan A and Plan B.
Pascal Siakam was Plan B, according to Raptors coach Nick Nurse. Andrew Wiggins met the Second Team All-NBA forward at halfcourt, forcing him into a difficult turnaround jumper for the win as time expired. Siakam's shot rimmed out, and the Warriors won.
Nurse told reporters in a postgame video conference he wished the Raptors had created a driving lane for Siakam, who liked the look he had.
So, how did the Warriors stop the Raptors' Plan A? Look no further than the 2016-17 Defensive Player of the Year, Draymond Green, who seemed to be a step ahead of Toronto on the final possession.
As basketball coach Gibson Pryer observed in a breakdown on Twitter, Green's communication with teammates Kevon Looney and Kelly Oubre Jr. prevented inbounder Kyle Lowry from making an easy pass to a cutting Fred VanVleet.
Green's off-ball work forced the Raptors away from their first option, and Wiggins provided excellent on-ball defense on the second. The Warriors surely didn't expect the margins to be so thin after entering the fourth quarter with a 15-point lead, but defense proved to be the difference in Sunday night's win.
Golden State improved to 4-2 over its last six games since Green's return to the lineup, and the Warriors have the NBA's 10th-best defensive rating (105.6) during that time. There's a lot of season left to be played, of course, but Sunday's stop on the last possession is further proof the Warriors' defense is capable of meeting its preseason goals as long as Green is in the lineup.