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Durant responds to Capela's bold claim by taking shot at Rockets center

Durant responds to Capela's bold claim by taking shot at Rockets center

After the Rockets beat the Warriors on Saturday night, Clint Capela made the following statement:

"We're confident because we know if we're doing what we're supposed to do, we're going to beat them ... we are better than them."

On Monday, Kevin Durant was asked if he caught wind of Capela's strong words.

"Yeah," Durant answered while smiling. "It's all a part of the game. They beat us twice this year. They should feel confident. Obviously, we're confident and we feel as though we are the best team in the league and we can beat anybody as well. But we can be beat. We can be beat on any night if we don't come to play.

"We don't want to give those teams that type of confidence but we let it happen. We gotta move on and if we end up seeing this team, I'm sure it would be a fun one.

"You hear that from guys like Capela -- who's usually catching the ball and laying it up from CP (Chris Paul) or James Harden. His job is not as hard. When your job is that hard, you know you can't come out there and just say sh*t like that. 

"I don't expect that from CP and James and Ariza and the rest of the guys because they know how hard it is to come out there and do that every night. Capela -- catch and dunk every night so it's pretty easy for him."

Capela recorded 18 points, five rebounds, four steals and a block in Houston's 116-108 victory.

The Warriors (37-10) lead the Rockets (32-12) by 3.5 games for the No. 1 seed in the West.

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller

Fehr or Foul: Sharks acquire a fourth-line center, but is he the solution?


Fehr or Foul: Sharks acquire a fourth-line center, but is he the solution?

UPDATE (3:57 PM PST): Fehr will join the Sharks in Nashville on Wednesday, according to the Bay Area News Group's Paul Gackle. This article has been updated to reflect that. 

Trade season has arrived in San Jose, after the Sharks acquired a veteran center on Tuesday. 

Six days before the NHL trade deadline, the Sharks traded a 2020 seventh round pick to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for Eric Fehr. 

The 32-year-old center has spent the bulk of his season on loan to the AHL's San Diego Gulls, after he went unclaimed on waivers in October. In 34 games with the Gulls, who play in the same division as the Sharks' AHL affiliate, Fehr scored 28 points (17 goals, 11 assists). 

The Bay Area News Group reported last month that the Sharks were in the market for a fourth-line center, and Ryan Carpenter, Barclay Goodrow, and Danny O'Regan all got looks at the position. Carpenter was waived after scoring an assist in 16 games, but has scored seven points (five goals, two assists) in 13 games since the Vegas Golden Knights claimed him in December.

Goodrow had not played the position professionally prior to this season, but acquitted himself reasonably well, all things considered: He's posted the best five-on-five possession numbers of his career (51.1 percent corsi-for percentage), and scored a career-high five goals in 30 games. O'Regan, the Barracuda's leading scorer last season, hasn't been able to seize a regular role and has seemed overmatched at times. 

Fehr, meanwhile, is a more proven option, with some utility to boot. He's not played less than a minute-and-a-half on the penalty kill since 2013-14, according to Natural Stat Trick, and suppresses opposing shots pretty well for a fourth line center, per Own The Puck

It's also fair to question whether or not his best hockey is behind him. As mentioned previously, he's 32 and spent the majority of his season in the AHL, plus he hasn't been a positive five-on-five possesion player relative to his teammates since 2013-14.

The Sharks didn't give up much, as their last pick in a draft two years away is close to nothing. But, they had an opportunity to acquire the forward at no cost when he was first placed on waivers in October, and he went unclaimed. 

Fehr will join his new teammates Wednesday in Nashville. He's spent all but one of his 13 NHL seasons in the Eastern Conference, but does have some familiarity with San Jose. 

He scored against the Sharks in game four of the 2016 Stanley Cup Final, and played alongside Joel Ward in Washington from 2013-15. 

After McCutchen takes Bumgarner deep, Posey runs interference


After McCutchen takes Bumgarner deep, Posey runs interference

SCOTTSDALE -- Throughout the first week of camp, Giants players have raved about Andrew McCutchen's impact on the clubhouse. The new right fielder is opening eyes on the field, too.

McCutchen had the highlight of the first day of live batting practice sessions, crushing a Madison Bumgarner pitch into the left field bullpen. Buster Posey immediately got out of his squat and ushered McCutchen out of the batter's box.

"Obviously it was just a joke ... partly a joke," Posey said, smiling.

Bumgarner took it in stride, smiling as fans cheered for McCutchen and coaches yelled out at the mound. 

"I'm just trying to welcome a new teammate," Bumgarner said. "That just reiterated why I never threw him (pitches) in during the regular season. You watch him play a small amount and you realize how quick he is in there. I don't think I ever threw him in very much."

McCutchen has 22 career at-bats against Bumgarner, with just three hits and no home runs. He confirmed that Bumgarner -- who goes inside to right-handers as much as any lefty in the game -- hasn't challenged him inside very often. 

"It was good to get back in there and get the feel and see the velocity and feel the ball hit the bat and just get your timing down," McCutchen said. "He does a good job of just keeping the ball down, so yeah, I don't think I've really gotten too many of those when I've faced him."

McCutchen didn't just get to Bumgarner. A few minutes later, he hit an Andrew Suarez pitch 430 feet off the wall in center field. Nick Hundley, who was behind the cage, turned to the dugout, where team officials were watching.

"Good trade, Bobby!" he yelled.