June 4, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) moves the ball against Cleveland Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson (13) during the second half in game one of the NBA Finals. at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Perhaps it’s no surprise the 2 players below end up on my intangible list as they’ve gone the extra mile all season and repeatedly been a factor in wins for their clubs in the post season. Coincidentally, both these players are restricted free agents this summer with Thompson choosing to turn down a 4 year $52 million contracts offered at the start of this season and Green poised to earn a maximum contract. Green’s situation is dicey given he’s not the typical max player (he doesn’t create his own shot), but he’s the heart and soul of the Warriors’ defense given his ability to defend every position. Green can stretch the floor and his real plus/minus is a team best and among the league best.
Tristan Thompson: 2 points, 15 rebounds (6 offensive), 1 assist, 1 steal, 1 block. Look for Thompson to be the recipient of some shot attempts in Game 2 as the Cavs endeavor to involve the entire team on the court and move away from LeBron iso ball. Certainly with 15 rebounds Thompson has earned the right for more than 4 shot attempts (his total in Game 1).
Draymond Green: 12 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals. NOTE: this was not a typical game for Green which has to be a concern for Cleveland given his dominance this post season. Although part of the reason he wasn’t as much of a factor may well be the presence of Thompson who is a difficult cover for Green given his mobility and presence on the glass (especially on the offensive end).
Next: The Bigger Loss Than the Game?