Gameday: Kevin Durant's Oklahoma City return Part 2


Gameday: Kevin Durant's Oklahoma City return Part 2

Programming note: Warriors-Thunder coverage begins on NBC Sports Bay Area at 4 p.m. with Pregame Live and is streaming live right here.

The Warriors will have Kevin Durant back Wednesday when they conclude a four-game road trip with a game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 4 p.m., with tipoff scheduled for 5:05.

The Warriors (13-4) recovered from a loss at Boston last Thursday to sweep a back-to-back set at Philadelphia and Brooklyn over the weekend. Durant missed the game against the Nets but returned to practice Tuesday in New York and was upgraded to probable Wednesday morning in Oklahoma City.

The Thunder (7-9) underwent a drastic makeover last summer, adding perennial All-Stars Carmelo Anthony and Paul George, and are having a tough time adjusting to the reshaped roster.


Warriors by 5.5


Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry vs. Russell Westbrook. Even with the new acquisitions in OKC, Westbrook remains the engine behind this team. He still takes the most shots (despite a 39.4 FG percentage) and he leads in rebounds and assists. The key to beating the OKC last season was keeping him in check. The same applies so far this season. Expect Curry and Thompson to be tag-team partners on defense.


Warriors: F Kevin Durant (L ankle sprain) was listed as probable, but will play, Steve Kerr announced. C Damian Jones is on assignment with the G-League Santa Cruz Warriors.

Thunder: No injuries listed.


Warriors 9-1, Thunder 4-6.


Monty McCutchen, Karl Lane and Kevin Scott.


The Warriors swept all four games last season and have won the last seven regular-season meetings. They have won the last three in Oklahoma City. The teams met in the 2016 Western Conference Finals, with the Warriors prevailing in seven games.


WATCH THE GIVEAWAYS: The Warriors commit an average of 16.8 turnovers per game, worse than all but two teams. That is an area the Thunder are capable of exploiting. OKC is third in defensive rating and, moreover, leads the NBA in steals and deflections while being tied for the lead in loose balls recovered. Above all, the Thunder are tops in the league in forcing turnovers (17.6 per game) and creating points off them at 20.9 per game.

KD vs. PG: For a number of seasons, George in Indiana was to the Eastern Conference what Durant was to the West in OKC. Each can play either forward position, each handles the ball well, each plays both ends and each was his team’s biggest star. They’re in different places now, but the pride levels won’t change. Each will want to reign over the other. This matchup will be fun to watch.

BURYING THE HABIT: The Warriors have continued their dangerous tendency to either fall behind and be forced to generate a comeback or build a lead only to give most of it, if not all of it, back their opponent. Will OKC and its high-profile roster, as well as Durant’s longtime connection to the franchise, be enough for the Warriors to remain focused for the duration? In their favor: the Thunder are 0-8 in games decided by eight or fewer points.

Steve Kerr reveals best remedy for dealing with Warriors-related stress


Steve Kerr reveals best remedy for dealing with Warriors-related stress

Programming note: Watch Wednesday night's Warriors-Thunder game streaming live at 7:30 p.m. PT on the MyTeams app.

Breaking news: Last week was pretty rough for the Golden State Warriors.

It was exhausting for Steve Kerr, who needed to get out of Oracle Arena ASAP last Tuesday night after the Warriors beat the Hawks:

Golden State went 0-3 on its Texas road trip, and the team was still dealing with the aftermath of the Kevin Durant-Draymond Green drama.

[RELATEDSteph Curry explains why it's harder for Warriors to move past drama]

So what does the Warriors' head coach do when going through tumultuous times?

"I'm reading a really good book about Bill Belichick right now. I actually started it on the road trip, and I find the best way to deal with any kind of stress in my job is to get into a good book," Kerr said on KNBR 680 on Tuesday night. "Or just watch the Chiefs and the Rams (laughter)."

It was a rather epic Monday Night Football game -- a great way to close out a home off-day for Kerr. Once he finishes the book on Belichick, he might turn to Andre Iguodala for some new material.

"Andre's really got a lot of interesting reading suggestions," Kerr added. "So sometimes we share books or articles or something."

Back in October 2017, the 2015 NBA Finals MVP said the following to Mark Medina of the Bay Area News Group:

"A lot that goes on that can weigh on your brain and it can shorten guys' careers. So you gotta stay sharp. That's the only secret I'll give you -- I try to read a whole lot of books.

"You know what's interesting -- I usually have no idea the title of the book I'm reading. I never know the author's name for some reason."

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

Kevin Durant reacts to $25,000 fine, explains frustration with fans


Kevin Durant reacts to $25,000 fine, explains frustration with fans

In the midst of drama with Warriors teammate Draymond Green and a shooting slump that hasn't helped the team's woes, Kevin Durant's bank account took a hit Tuesday. 

Durant was fined $25,000 by the NBA for telling a Mavericks fan to "watch the f****** game and shut the f*** up" in Dallas during the Warriors' loss Saturday night. And now we know when Durant found out about the fine. 

While taping a Yahoo Sports podcast with NBA Insider Chris Haynes, the reporter broke the news live to Durant. 

"I knew I was gonna get fined," Durant said.

He then went on to explain what made him lash out at the fan. 

"More fans should understand what that means," Durant said. "Grown men can't come to a game and heckle grown men. That's corny, that's weak. You're comin' to a game to heckle another grown man. 'You're soft. You're weak. Draymond this. Draymond that. You're a b****.' 

"You're goin' to sleep as a grown man and doin' that to another person." 

Durant and the Warriors have lost four out of their last five games. Their matchup with Russell Westbrook and the Thunder couldn't come at a better time.