The Golden State Warriors came out victorious in a 107-96 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night. In the same game where All-Star Steph Curry made history, 76ers stars were given a hard fight. Although All-Star center Joel Embiid of the 76ers put up an impressive performance, it was a little challenging for him against the Warriors’ defense. With an impressive defensive performance by Draymond Green, after the game, Embiid went into detail about what he really thinks about the 2017 Defensive Player of the Year.
Embiid Gets Honest About Green
Embiid almost came out of Monday night’s game with a triple-double putting up 28 points, 13 rebounds, and 8 assists. However, the pressure was put on by the Warriors veteran. Although his stats from the game may not show it, having only two steals and zero blocks, Green was almost virtually everywhere on the court. In his postgame interview, per the Warriors’ Soundcloud, Embiid described how Green’s defense impacted the game, complimenting his play.
“He’s a great defender,” said Embiid when asked about Green’s defense. “There’s nothing I can take away from that. He’s a great one-on-one defender. He’s a good team defender. You know he’s very smart.”
Being one of the MVP frontrunners, Embiid was continuously pressured by Green and the rest of the Warriors’ defense during Monday night’s matchup. Minus star players Ben Simmons and Tobias Harris, Embiid was left to carry a more significant load, which was proven to be difficult without his star supporting cast.
Green, who has previously stated that he is the greatest defender ever, had multiple moments where he was solely guarding Embiid, however, according to Embiid, Green didn’t fully guard the MVP candidate.
“There was one time, they actually guarded me one-on-one, and that’s when he got his fifth foul,” said Embiid. “So, there’s a lot of guys that can get a lot of credit. You know when you’re going to send double teams every single time. You know when someone has the ball. It doesn’t matter how good a defender you are.”
Warriors Defense Won the Game
Although Curry’s incredible performance headlined the game, it wasn’t just Curry who won the game for the Warriors, it was the team’s dominant defensive performance that shut down the 76ers scoring in the second half. The 76ers ended the game shooting at 39.3%, which might be owed to Green’s defensive power while also being a solid additional defender on Embiid.
Despite Embiid’s respect for Green as a great defender, Embiid isn’t fully convinced that Green could effectively guard him one-on-one. Unfortunately, this will be the last time that the Warriors will play against the 76ers this season, so unless both teams make it to the NBA Finals, it won’t be until next season when the teams face off against each other again.
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