Draymond Green says losing to the Lakers in the play-in last season was a ‘dark’ moment

Jason Simpson
3 Min Read

The Golden State Warriors have had a special 2021-22 season, and the team is now just four wins away from claiming this year’s NBA title.

The organization’s journey back to relevance has been an interesting one.

After losing in the 2019 NBA Finals, the Warriors suffered through two straight frustrating seasons. At some points, fans questioned whether or not the organization would make another Finals appearance with its current core.

Those doubts have been put to rest, but there were certainly some tough days along the way. In fact, Warriors veteran Draymond Green recently described Golden State’s play-in loss to the Los Angeles Lakers last season as a “dark day.”

“I think not making the playoffs last year,” Green told Marc J. Spears of Andscape when asked to name the darkest day over the last two years. “Because the bubble season, at that point I had already moved on mentally from that [2019-20] season. I was not tripping about not being in the bubble. I was with my family, it was incredible. But I think last year, really after losing that play-in to the Lakers, that was a dark day. … We’re competitors, so we didn’t come out and quit. They still had to take the game, but we lost to Memphis when we lost to the Lakers.

“And that for me is like, that was a dark moment for me because I just didn’t think that [Lakers] team should’ve beat us. And they did. And then there was two years not in the playoffs. … Of course, I had some dark days in 2020, but we sucked so bad I just moved on from it. But last year I felt like if we got into the playoffs, we were going to beat Utah.”

Golden State’s play-in loss to the Lakers didn’t end the team’s season, but the Warriors’ year did end shortly after, as they lost to the Memphis Grizzlies in the next leg of the play-in.

The Lakers’ play-in win over the Warriors gave L.A. a shot at the Phoenix Suns in the playoffs. Unfortunately for the Lakers, the series didn’t go as hoped. Phoenix shut the door in six games.

A year later, the Lakers and Warriors are in very different positions. L.A. had a brutal 2021-22 season and never looked like a legitimate title contender. Golden State, meanwhile, is just four wins away from capturing this season’s title. In order to win it all, the team will have to deal with the Boston Celtics.

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Jason is excited about the LeBron James era of Lakers basketball and hopes that the end result will be multiple championships.