Draymond Green Reveals No. 1 Key to Warriors Beating Mavs in 2022 NBA Playoffs

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVMay 17, 2022

San Francisco, CA - MAY 13:  Draymond Green #23 of the Golden State Warriors celebrates after Game 6 of the 2022 NBA Playoffs Western Conference Semifinals on May 13, 2021 at Chase Center in San Francisco, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2021 NBAE (Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images)
Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images

Draymond Green's key to the Golden State Warriors reaching the NBA Finals? 

Eliminate turnovers.

Green said the Warriors' propensity for coughing the ball up hurt them in their first two playoff series, and they won't have the same margin for error against the Dallas Mavericks. 

"It’s going to be a tough matchup for us. I think one thing we know we have to do is get our turnovers down," Green said on his podcast. "Those guys will feed off of turnovers. ... That’s something that, moving forward, we need to correct. That’ll be a big deal for us because that allows us not only to get good looks and more looks at the rim, but it allows us to set our defense. And anytime you’re playing against a set defense, it’s just much harder than when you’re playing in transition."

The Warriors have turned the ball over on 15.8 percent of their playoff possessions, ranking 11th among the 16 postseason qualifiers and the worst among the four conference finalists. While the turnovers are partially a product of their pass-heavy offense—no playoff team assists on a higher percentage of their baskets—many of them are easily fixable mistakes made by superstars trying to do too much.

Golden State turned the ball over 22 times in an ugly Game 5 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies and has coughed it up an average of 18.3 times per game in three postseason losses.

After a mostly stellar first-round performance against the Denver Nuggets, Green was a turnover machine against Memphis. He coughed the ball up 24 times over the six games and had four or more turnovers in five of the six contests. 

Jordan Poole also came back to earth after a breakout Round 1, averaging 3.2 turnovers per game and shooting just 29.7 percent from three-point range.

The Mavericks, by contrast, are the least mistake-prone team remaining in the playoffs. Their 8.4 steals per 100 possessions are also the second-best among the conference finalists.