SAN ANTONIO -- The question was simple, so rookie forward Draymond Green's answer was simply put.
Q: "Is this late-game thing now a thing?"
"Nope," Green said, taking his finger and slicing it across his neck. "That's dead. We're over that."
If only it were so simple.
For the second consecutive playoff game, the Warriors blew a big lead late. Unlike in Game 6 against Denver, this time they snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. They led by 16 points with four minutes left in regulation, one or two buckets away from stealing Game 1 in the best-of-seven, second-round series against No. 2 San Antonio. On the road.
But the Spurs closed regulation with an 18-2 run to force overtime, hijacking the momentum and eventually the series opener.
"It's a learning experience but it's a tough feeling," point guard Stephen Curry said. "You play so well for three-and-a-half quarters to put yourself in position to get a win on the road against a great basketball team, and you squander the lead. It is a concern you have to learn from. You can't keep doing the same thing, especially as these games in the playoffs become more important."
San Antonio made six straight field goals, including two 3-pointers -- one from Danny Green that sent the game into overtime -- in the final 3:57. Meanwhile, Golden State was 1 of 7 with two turnovers.
So, coach Mark Jackson, you've seen the film. What happened?
"I think overall, you miss free throws, you don't value possessions, you throw away a possession offensively, you don't get back in transition, you don't pay attention to detail defensively, you give up a three, you have breakdowns."
The same happened, basically, against Denver.
The Warriors, on their home court, led by 17 with 8:01 left in Game 6 against Denver. Golden State missed six of its next nine shots and turned it over nine times, winning thanks to two free throws by backup guard Jarrett Jack in the final seconds.
A clear trend is developing. The Warriors' young team has never been on this stage before, and it is showing when the pressure mounts.
A constant theme in both: The Warriors' offense disappears.
Golden State, when it really needs a basket to stop a run, ends up turning it over or settling for jumpers. As Curry puts it, their offense gets predictable.
Part of the problem is the Warriors have only two players who can create offense for themselves and others: Curry and Jack. Perhaps another reason is the Warriors' offense is too simplified. They primarily run pick-and-roll with Curry at the point, or put Jack at point and run Curry and guard Klay Thompson off a bunch of screens.
"Defenses are good in the fourth quarter," Curry said, "especially if they know what you're going to run and they're able to make adjustments and funnel you where they want you to go. You have to avoid those situations, because its tough to execute when a defense that's prepared knows what you're going to do."
The other constant: The Warriors get helter-skelter on defense.
Struggling offense seems to sap the life out of the Warriors' defense. They have been known for scraping out stops all season, but they're susceptible to giving up easy baskets at the worst times.
Turnovers play a role. But also Jackson likes to go with his small lineup, which leaves the rim unprotected. That's bad news when breakdowns on defense occur.
"We're just young and inexperienced right now," center Andrew Bogut said. "We're not doing a good job of closing out games both offensively and defensively. I think defensively is where it all starts. We can go into an offensive drought, but we can't allow a team to score 16 straight points."