Kevin Durant Comments on Getting Booed, Playing with Stephen Curry, Warriors

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJuly 26, 2016

LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 22:  Kevin Durant #5 of the United States sets up a play against Argentina during a USA Basketball showcase exhibition game at T-Mobile Arena on July 22, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The United States won 111-74.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Kevin Durant is confident beauty will transcend hate when the Golden State Warriors step on the floor next year.

In an interview with The Vertical's Michael Lee, however, the 2014 MVP discussed his belief that some of the Warriors' detractors will eventually come around to appreciate the team:

If you like basketball. If you enjoy basketball. But if you enjoy the drama and everything that comes around, the narratives, the comparisons and the rankings, obviously, it's going to be like a TV show to you. If you enjoy pure basketball, like I enjoy it, then it don't matter who is playing. You're going to want to watch good basketball. If you enjoy basketball in its purest form, you can appreciate how far our league has come and the great players in our league. But if you enjoy all that [expletive] that comes from the outside, then you'll love the boos and the tweets and the first takes and all that. I love basketball and I love whoever loves the game in its purest form.

Much of Golden State's success will hinge on how seamlessly Durant moves into what was already a cohesive squad. In particular, he'll need to have a strong rapport with Stephen Curry.

"I'll figure that out when we get there," Durant said, per Lee. "When you have two players who love to play the game, enjoy winning, enjoy teamwork and camaraderie—obviously, it's going to be a transition, but everything new has a transition. It will be all right."

Durant will likely be a key member of Golden State's pick-and-roll offense. According to NBA.com, Festus Ezeli and Marreese Speights were the Warriors' two most frequent roll men. Both players are gone, leaving a clear void.

Whereas opposing teams largely knew what was coming with Speights and Ezeli in the pick-and-roll yet still had trouble defending it, Durant opens up new possibilities.

He could either attack the basket or he could float out to the three-point line for a pick-and-pop. When he's setting picks for Curry, the duo will be almost impossible to defend. And should defense go all out to stop Durant and Curry, then they'll likely leave Klay Thompson or Draymond Green open on the perimeter.

The Warriors may not become the most liked team in the league, but that won't matter if they're dominating their opponents on a nightly basis.


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