Warriors

Does Curry care that Kerr believes Durant is second best player in NBA?

Does Curry care that Kerr believes Durant is second best player in NBA?

According to Steve Kerr, LeBron James is the best player in the world, and Kevin Durant -- not Steph Curry -- is the second best.

On Wednesday, Kerr was a guest on The Lowe Post Podcast and was asked the following question:

"Do you think Steph cares about that? Steph is the two-time reigning MVP and I feel like everyone has sort of collectively forgotten how good he is. He was amazing in the Finals, he was really good in the Finals two years ago for which he gets no credit. When you say something like that publicly, are you worried that Steph is gonna be, 'Hey, what about me?' Or just doesn't matter to him?"

"If I worried about it, I wouldn't say it (laughter)," Kerr told Lowe. "That's the beauty of Steph -- he doesn't take that stuff personally. He understands it. Steph is one of the great players in the world. Two-time MVP, incredibly dominant in terms of the way he impacts the game.

"But you're talking about Kevin Durant at 6'11" protecting the rim, and scoring 35 points a game in the Finals, and getting to the line, doing whatever he wants to do."

Durant averaged 35.2 points, 8.4 rebounds, 5.4 assists and 1.6 blocks against the Cavs, and shot over 55 percent from the field, over 47 percent from deep and just under 93 percent from the free throw line.

It was truly one of the best Finals performances of all time and he was named Finals MVP.

Curry averaged 26.8 points, 8.0 rebounds, 9.4 assists and 2.2 steals, while shooting 44 percent from the field and just under 39 percent from 3-point territory.

"There's a different level of impact that's actually possible for Steph and for KD," Kerr explained. "Steph is my size, he's literally exactly my size. So what he's capable of is all based on his amazing skill.

"In the playoffs especially, when you're having to protect the rim and do so many different things, there has to be a level of physicality that factors in when you're having these kind of conversations about who is the best player in the league.

"And that's why LeBron is there, that's why Kawhi (Leonard) is there, that's why KD is there. That combination of skill and physical sheer force."

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller

NBA rumors: Warriors alarmed Kevin Durant lacked joy after second title

NBA rumors: Warriors alarmed Kevin Durant lacked joy after second title

In three seasons with the Warriors, Kevin Durant won two championships and two NBA Finals MVPs.

If he didn't get hurt, it could have been 3-for-3 in both departments.

On June 30, KD announced that he was going to sign with the Brooklyn Nets in free agency. On Monday, Golden State general manager Bob Myers said he doesn't think there's anything the Warriors could have done differently to keep the 10-time All-Star with the franchise.

ESPN's Brian Windhorst agrees, and offered the following context Monday on The Jump:

"I think even if he doesn't get hurt, even if they win the title, I think there's a good chance he was leaving. You never know for sure. The thing about the Warriors, they were very alarmed after winning two titles that Durant didn't seem to have the joy.

"We knew he suffered the downsides of what it meant to come to the Warriors. When he took and raised that Bill Russell trophy twice -- and didn't have the joy -- they were worried last summer.

"Normally you would think, 'Oh my gosh, this guy just won two titles and two MVPs -- this guy is locked up with us for life.' And they were worried about it way back then, and as the season went along it only made it even worse."

Let's provide even more context.

In late March 2018 -- about nine months after the Dubs won the title -- KD revealed the following story on The Bill Simmons Podcast:

"People tell us we're superstars, and we really aren't ... after we won the championship, I had Taco Bell and it ran through me just like it would a normal person. I'm like, 'Oh sh--. I thought I had a golden stomach (joking). I thought I was immune to everything, but no.

"That's the perception of it all -- we're just immortal. We're normal fu**ing people who are really good at what we do. But at the end of the day, we go to sleep just like everybody else. We really put on our pants just like everybody else ... it made me realize that I am not king anything because we won a championship." 

A couple months later -- after the Dubs won back-to-back championships -- ESPN's Zach Lowe wrote the following:

Both [Steve] Kerr and [Steve] Nash saw the drifting start over the summer, after Durant realized his first championship would not complete his life -- or silence every critic. He didn't work as often with Nash, or as productively, as planned.

"He didn't have a great summer," Nash says. "He was searching for what it all meant. He thought a championship would change everything, and found out it doesn't. He was not fulfilled. He didn't work out as much as he normally does."

[RELATEDEx-Dubs exec West explains why Clips are best organization]

For a multitude of reasons -- some of which have come to light -- KD felt like it was time to leave Golden State.

You can only hope he finds what he's looking for.

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Ex-Warriors exec Jerry West explains why Clippers are best organization

Ex-Warriors exec Jerry West explains why Clippers are best organization

Jerry West joined the Warriors as an Executive Board member in May 2011, and his time with the franchise came to an end after the Dubs won the title in June 2017.

He immediately joined the Clippers' front office, and during his introductory press conference in LA he said he did not want to leave Golden State and that he thought he would never work anywhere else again.

The Hall of Famer was a guest on The Dan Patrick Show on Monday, and made some interesting comments:

"One of the things I enjoy about being here -- and obviously this is gonna be my final stop in my basketball life -- is [Clippers owner] Steve Ballmer has really put together an unbelievably terrific organization. He has spared no expense.

"It's a really fun place to be. It's not ego-driven at all. He's got an awful lot of basketball people over there and I'm just happy to be such a small part of it.

"He's willing to spend on players, he's willing to spend on personnel within the front office. I've never been around any organization that's better than this one that's for sure."

Wow. Strong words from The Logo.

Shortly after West -- who reportedly is making between $4 and $5 million annually -- joined the Clippers, The Athletic's Sam Amick (who was with USA Today Sports at the time) said the following on The Ringer NBA Show Podcast:

"They didn't want to pay him as much as the Clippers did. It got a little messy at the end. They all tried to keep it under wraps a little bit. Jerry's been a little bit outspoken.

"This Warriors thing -- that was a painful ending ... he wanted to be back with the Warriors. I was definitely told that he was extremely disappointed with how that ended."

You can do the math.

[RELATEDCurry's one-word answer when asked if Dubs make playoffs]

Finally, West doesn't want any credit for the Clippers landing Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.

"Oh no. Not at all. I should get very little at all," he said. "I've gotten far too much credit in my life ... I just had a voice. Our front office is really terrific.

"They were really on top of this thing the whole way."

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