Draymond Green rescues Warriors in Curry's absence

Ezra Shaw / Getty Images Sport / Getty

With Stephen Curry and Andre Iguodala nursing injuries, it was up to Draymond Green to save the Golden State Warriors' 43-game win streak at the Oracle.

Green didn't disappoint.

The league's premier power forward stuffed the boxscore with 15 points, 13 rebounds, nine assists, four steals, and a block in 42 grueling minutes to rescue the 109-105 win from the Atlanta Hawks.

Green drilled a split-legged prayer in the dying seconds of overtime to preserve the victory.

Klay Thompson supplied 26 points, Andrew Bogut added 19, and four other Warriors topped double-digits as the reigning champions did just enough to extend their home unbeaten streak and their immortal chase for 73 wins alive.

Green showed Warriors fans his beautifully rugged version of the Dubs. Green is the yin to Curry's yang. He's the blue-collared worker behind the scenes, moving sets, and covering rotations in the background while Curry plays the part of the pristine, white-collared leading man.

Without Curry, however, the Warriors aren't quite as pretty. There aren't any 37-footers, no cocky shimmies. What remains is the often overlooked half of the Warriors' championship equation: their grit.

On a night where the Warriors shot under 40 percent from the field, they had to rely on every other part of their game to win - and that's where Green comes in.

The Warriors struggled to score, but so did the Hawks. Credit Green for that: He would often make two or three rotations in a single possession, switching seamlessly 1-through-5, while also capping off defensive stands with the rebound.

Green put the clamps on the Hawks' leading scorer in Paul Millsap, who shot a miserable 5-of-17 from the floor including 1-of-6 shooting from deep.

What little offense the Warriors generated was borne out of tremendous effort. Curry and Iguodala typically handle playmaking duties for the starting and bench units, but that fell on Green's shoulders in their absence. He supplied nine assists and two "hockey assists" (pass leading to a pass leading to a basket).

Like most aspects of Green's game, the Warriors looked ugly and awkward - especially when Green badly bricked an open three. But it was effective, and ultimately, the Warriors were able to win because Green is just so good between the margins.

Last week featured Curry's Warriors, the high-scoring, breathtaking, physics-defying offensive display that left former legends baffled.

Tuesday was something much more familiar: The Warriors played Green's game. Hard-nosed defense, making the extra pass, and making big plays in the clutch - those fundamentals as old as the game itself. Old heads can't mistake that.

What those doubters miss while taking shots at Curry is that the Warriors aren't some one-trick pony. They dominate both ends of the floor, while being able to play any style. And even when the gloss of Curry's game is stripped away, there's still the immutable toughness of Green to carry the charge.