Jayson Tatum resumed his dribbling when the time-out whistle blew. With 12 minutes behind and 4:40 left, the Celtics’ dwindling chances likely depended on a late spurt from their star. With Tatum holding the ball, two of the Warriors’ ball hawks were determined to stop him from landing a practice shot.
This was a version of a player shooting during a dead ball and an opponent knocking him out of the air. The shooters must not see the ball going in. The scorers must not steal confidence between whistles. So Gary Payton II stuck to Tatum so he wouldn’t try to sneak some rhythm. Draymond Green joined the doubles team. The game had stopped. The Celtics were headed to the bench for their time-out. But the Warriors didn’t let up on the ball.
A defiant Tatum, unwilling to show any sign of surrender, responded by keeping the stone and taking it to the bank. So Draymond followed Tatum all the way to the Boston bank and backed into a green hedge like the Homer Simpson GIF. The Warriors star didn’t care that he was surrounded by the entire Celtics roster. He was chasing the ball. He was a nuisance. He sent a message. He did what Draymond does.
(Photo: Kyle Terada / USA Today)