Warriors

Stephen Jackson believes Warriors 'got too cocky' in Game 2 collapse

Stephen Jackson believes Warriors 'got too cocky' in Game 2 collapse

Meltdown. Collapse. Embarrassment.

Look up any of those words in the dictionary, and the Warriors' Game 2 performance against the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday night should come to mind.

The two-time defending NBA champions held a 31-point lead with eight minutes to go in the third quarter, but they weren't able to finish the deal and take a 2-0 series lead to Los Angeles.

Instead, the Clippers ended the third quarter on a 36-12 run and trailed by just 14 heading into the fourth.

Out of their rhythm and lacking focus, the Warriors continued to turn the ball over and leave the door open for the Clippers. It was an opportunity Doc Rivers' club was all too happy to take advantage of, with Landry Shamet knocking down a game-winning 3-pointer with 16 seconds to play to give the Clippers a 135-131 win.

So, how exactly did the Warriors blow the biggest lead in NBA playoff history? One word: Arrogance. 

Former Warrior Stephen Jackson went on FOX Sports 1's "First Things First" and explained how the team's cockiness allowed the Clippers to hang around, and LA's collection of gritty role players did the rest.

Stack Jack has a point.

The Warriors are well aware of the talent disparity in the series, and it's caused them to play careless basketball for long stretches of both Games 1 and 2, believing that, in the end, their talent will win out. 

It likely will in this series, but the Dubs must clean up their play and find renewed focus as the playoffs wear on.

[RELATED:  Steph explains how Warriors unraveled in Game 2]

The Warriors' first task should be to dispatch the pesky Clippers as soon as possible.

Blowing the 31-point lead already made sure the series will go three days longer, and the Warriors need to make sure it goes no further than Game 5. With the Houston Rockets potentially waiting in the wings in the Western Conference semifinals, the Warriors will want all the rest they can before that slugfest.

Draymond Green's mom agrees Warriors need Kevin Durant for NBA Finals

Draymond Green's mom agrees Warriors need Kevin Durant for NBA Finals

The Warriors are rolling right now. Whether it's the Splash Brothers heating up from deep, or Draymond Green doing it, the Blazers have had no answers for them in the Western Conference finals. 

And they're doing it all without Kevin Durant, the back-to-back NBA Finals MVP. 

Without Durant, the Warriors are looking like the squad that won a ring and set a NBA record with 73 regular-season wins without him. None of that matters, though. When you can have one of the greatest to ever play the game on your team, you welcome him with wide open arms. 

Draymond Green's mother, Mary Babers-Green, agrees. 

Like mother, like son. 

With Durant rehabbing a strained right calf in the Warriors' last four games, all wins, Draymond has averaged 14 points, 10.8 rebounds and 7.8 assists per game. Don't tell him the Warriors are better without KD, though. 

“That’s idiotic,” Green said to The Athletic's Tim Kawakami Thursday after the Warriors' 114-111 win in Game 2 over the Blazers. “It’s very idiotic. I don’t think there’s one person in this locker room, one person in this organization that thinks that. And I know for damn sure that any idiot that does possibly (say) it don’t believe it.”

[RELATED: How incident with KD helped Draymond change his demeanor]

Durant will miss Game 4 on Monday. A Warriors win would give them a sweep and well over a week of rest before the NBA Finals begin on May 30.

Draymond Green shares how Warriors' video coordinator helped his leadership

Draymond Green shares how Warriors' video coordinator helped his leadership

Draymond Green went viral for all the right reasons on Saturday night.

The Warriors' do-it-all forward was all over the place in Golden State's 110-99 Game 3 win over the Trail Blazers. He scored 20 points, grabbed 13 rebounds, dished 12 assists, and swiped four steals. 

His leadership, however, stole the show. After the win, Green turned to the Warriors' video coordinator for putting him in the right mindset. 

"James Laughlin, our video coordinator, he came up to me right before the series started and he said, ‘Hey’ he said, ‘You’ve helped me a lot in growing since I’ve been here. And this series, we’re going to need our bench a lot and it’s important that you stick with them and continue to give them confidence,'" Green said. 

When Warriors backup center Jordan Bell missed a wide-open dunk, Green was right there to pick his teammate up. 

"He miss a shot tonight? Did he? I did. He did, too. It's OK. Keep it moving," Green was heard saying on the ESPN broadcast. "It's OK. You missed a shot. All of us have. Nobody's perfect."

Bell followed up the encouragement with a huge dunk two minutes later. 

"For a second, I caught myself, like, man, we could have cut that to six, and then we fouled them. Just like that, it just came upon me to stick with him [Bell] and give him some confidence, and sure enough, he had a dunk the next play and he had a block," Green said. 

"So I think that was an important moment, and it’s — you know, we always talk about the strength in numbers. That’s coming from a video coordinator. Usually, don’t get that from a video coordinator but that paid dividends for us tonight.”

[RELATED: New, focused Draymond putting his stamp on West finals]

The Warriors are getting the best version in every way possible of Green right now. He's not Steph Curry. He's not Kevin Durant. He's not Klay Thompson. But he's the catalyst that gets the train rolling, and clearly will be one of the biggest keys to the Warriors three-peating.