In new news that has shocked the league and astonished NBA fans, former 2014 league MVP, 7-time all star, 5-time NBA first team, and 4-time NBA scoring champion Kevin Durant made his decision Monday morning. In a post on the Player’s Tribune, KD shared his intentions to become a member of the Golden State Warriors. He took time to thank those in Oklahoma City for his time there.
There are plenty of mixed feelings in regard to Durant’s decision to join the 2015 NBA Champs, which is to be expected. There are fans that hate this move, going so far as to say that KD is “soft” for going to the Bay and that was one of the milder terms used. Beyond the anger and hate, there are folks who just see this move for what it is. Durant wants a ring now and he made a decision based on that fact, honestly what’s wrong with that?
It’s up to you to decide if or why there is something wrong with his decision, we’re going to discuss the basketball part of this move here.
This obviously puts the Warriors right back in the hunt for another title run as the talent on this team is unmatched. Their starting lineup now boosts two league MVP’s in Stephen Curry & Durant plus two all-star talents in Draymond Green & Klay Thompson. Shortly after Durant made his decision, Andrew Bogut was traded to Dallas for ZaZa Pachulia. Harrison Barnes also signed with Dallas, a four-year max contract.
The versatility of this team is what makes them so lethal. Curry can be used as the primary ball handler or play off-ball because of his ability to pass and shoot. Thompson has shown in the past that he can play both spots on the wing (shooting guard or small forward) because of his defensive ability and length. Durant is dangerous from anywhere in the court. KD’s addition only enhances Golden State’s death lineup, as he’s a 7-footer that can defend perimeter players and bigs at times. While Barnes versatility allowed him to play power forward in that lineup, Durant offers the Warriors much more in that role on both ends of the court because of his size and length.
Green who is easily considered the NBA’s most versatile big, sets this Warriors team apart by far. He naturally plays power forward, but moves to center in that death lineup. The pairing of Draymond and Kevin in that lineup will put an insane amount of pressure on opposing teams on the offensive end. Green has the ability to score inside or out and is an above average passer. More importantly, he and Durant can be legit terrors on the defensive end of the floor during those stretches. Like Green, KD can guard multiple positions and he’ll be able to help Draymond rebound and protect the rim.
There isn’t one team in the western conference or NBA for that matter who can boast about their starting four players like this. This Golden state roster is set to do major damage to the league once again.
Their offensive capabilities have many excited, but there defensive potential should be just as exciting. The Warriors were crowned champs then finished as the runner ups, life doesn’t get any better than landing one of the best scorers in the history of the league.
This union may not be forever as Durant signed a two-year deal with an opt-out after the first year. Still, it may be hard for Durant to leave after playing the style of basketball he’s longed for. Like it or not the Warriors have retooled and are highly motivated for another title, who’s going to stop them?