Warriors

Andrew Bogut says Kevin Durant's 'arguably the best player in the world'

Andrew Bogut says Kevin Durant's 'arguably the best player in the world'

OAKLAND – Andrew Bogut’s honesty cuts both ways. It’s refreshing when it’s what you want to hear, biting when it hits too close for comfort.

Asked about his impressions of Kevin Durant as a teammate, Bogut delivered a tall glass of refreshing.

“That he’s arguably the best player in the world,” Bogut said Monday, chuckling for emphasis.

In the eight games since Bogut arrived on March 18, he has seen Durant’s scoring efficiency go off the charts, with 55-percent shooting from the field and to 67.1 percent inside the 3-point line.

Throughout that stretch, Durant’s attempt rate has varied wildly, from as many as 25 shots on March 23 against Dallas to as few as five Sunday against Charlotte.

“He’s one of those guys that can go out there and get 40 or 50 on any given night,” Bogut said. “But he’s trying to play within the system as well, knowing that he has Steph (Curry) and Klay (Thompson) and other guys, like DeMarcus (Cousins), that he needs to get going.

“But he’s probably the most talented scorer I’ve ever been around.”

Durant was not available Monday – both he and Quinn Cook were attending a memorial service in the Washington D.C. area – but has indicated that he’s doing what he thinks is best for the team. He has nearly as many assists (54) as field goals (64) over the past eight games.

After observing Durant for two weeks, Bogut feels confident that Durant’s approach, trying to balance scoring with playmaking, is tactical.

“The balance is winning,” Bogut said. “I think Kevin knows that. Kevin’s never been a guy, since I’ve been around, that’s been coming in after games saying he needs more shots.

“This team . . . knows that it has five All-Stars in the starting lineup. You can’t all go out there and score 30. I think Kevin’s been more comfortable the last couple games distributing more than he’s used to. There are times when Steph will do that. Klay, not so much because he shoots (the ball) every time he touches it.”

[RELATED: Andrew Bogut roasts Klay Thompson when discussing Kevin Durant's shots]

That last comment, regarding Thompson, was made tongue in cheek.

Or maybe with a little bite.

Eight NBA stars who could've hit higher level without major injuries

Eight NBA stars who could've hit higher level without major injuries

The Warriors have dealt with their fair share of significant injuries these last couple of seasons.

Kevin Durant ruptured his Achilles, Klay Thompson tore his ACL and Steph Curry broke his hand within a six-month span. All of Dub Nation, as well as other NBA fans, hope that these stars will recover and carry on their Hall of Fame-caliber careers at the same level as they did before their injuries.

However, it's scary to think about how many major stars were not so lucky. Bill Walton's career was derailed by injuries, Larry Bird's back hindered his longevity in the league and Yao Ming's feet couldn't handle much more than eight seasons.

There are countless other examples, and Kerith Burke, Damion Lee and I discussed some of them on this week's episode of the "Runnin' Plays" podcast. We examined the players' careers that we would've loved to see be fulfilled and not hijacked by ailments.

Here are some of those players we listed, plus a few that I could not help but add.

CLICK HERE FOR MOST INTRIGUING PLAYERS WITH CAREERS CUT SHORT BY INJURIES

Warriors' Steph Curry explains rationale behind Howard golf donation

Warriors' Steph Curry explains rationale behind Howard golf donation

Warriors star Steph Curry simply was visiting Howard University to attend a screening of a documentary he was an executive producer for called "Emanuel," which focused on the horrific 2015 shooting of nine Black worshipers by a white supremacist inside a Charleston, South Carolina church.

But a single conversation with a Howard student ended up leading to Curry making a donation allowing the school to create a Division I men's and women's golf program, beginning with the 2020-21 academic year.

The amount of Curry's donation wasn't disclosed by the University, but it is expected to support several scholarships, hire a coach and fund the initial recruiting process. One student in particular, Otis Ferguson IV, sparked the idea in Curry's head after the two spoke about Ferguson's hopes of Howard creating a club golf program.

"He told me how much golf means to him," Curry told reporters after the first round of the American Century Championship in Lake Tahoe. "The idea came just from that. I heard what he had to say and I was like 'What can we do to bring that Division I program back?' Men's and Women's, and create scholarships, because we know how great the game of golf is, wanting to continue to create access and opportunity, not just playing but also in the business of golf."

[RACE IN AMERICA: Listen to the latest episode]

The coronavirus pandemic could have some disastrous impacts on Division I athletic departments over the next few years, but it doesn't sound like Curry's donation is going anywhere.

The recent groundswell of support for the Black Lives Matter movement has brought national attention to Historically Black Colleges and Universities, which never have had the same kind of competitive football and men's basketball programs as their other Division I counterparts. Five-star prep basketball prospect Makur Maker committed to Howard's men's basketball program on July 3, which could be just the beginning of a trend of elite prep athletes choosing HBCUs for all sports, not just basketball.

[RELATED: Watch Curry, Canelo Álvarez spar at golf tournament]

Curry's obsession with golf has been well documented throughout his NBA career. He and former teammate Andre Iguodala famously would sneak away during playoff series to get 18 holes in, whether they were at home or in another market. Iguodala recently said he bet a lump sum on Curry to beat the field in Lake Tahoe this weekend at the ACC.

The two-time NBA MVP finished Friday's first-round in 14th place, with 14 points (ACC utilizes golf's Stableford scoring system). Considering Steph's father Dell Curry stood ahead of him in the standings going into Saturday's second round, expect Curry to come out motivated at Edgewood Tahoe South.