Kevin Durant has shared the court with a number of the best scorers in NBA history, from Steph Curry and Klay Thompson to James Harden and Kyrie Irving.
The Brooklyn Nets superstar knows each of his current and former teammates' games, and what makes them unique. During a Twitter Spaces discussion last Friday, Durant got into a debate with a fan who claimed no one in the NBA is guarded like Curry, directly pointing to Harden as a player who gets the same treatment from opposing defenses.
“That’s not true bro, I’m sorry. I’ve seen James Harden get doubled just like that," Durant said when the fan claimed only Curry gets double-teamed from full court (h/t NetsWire).
The two-time NBA Finals MVP then went on to compare Curry and Harden, explaining how the two stars are guarded in a similar fashion on the ball but that Curry is much more dangerous off the ball than Harden.
“I’m talking about one scenario, on the ball, on the ball. Don’t talk off the ball right now. On the ball, if two people run into the half-court, tell me the difference between it happening with Steph (Curry) and James Harden … Same result, that’s all I’m saying. Off the ball, it’s different. Steph creates way more opportunities off the ball because he can catch and shoot quick and he run off -- I’m not talking about that scenario. I’m talking about dribbling, up the court with the ball in your hands and two people come up.”
Durant won two titles with Curry, and the Warriors would likely have won a third if he hadn't ruptured his Achilles tendon in Game 5 of the 2019 NBA Finals against the Toronto Raptors.
Durant, Harden and the Nets appeared to be on the fast track to an NBA title this season before injuries took their toll during Brookyln's second-round series loss to the Milwaukee Bucks. With Irving missing the final three games due to an ankle injury and Harden hobbled with a strained hamstring, it took a Herculean effort from Durant to push the series to seven games but he ultimately ran out of gas in overtime of Game 7.
As for Curry and the Warriors, they missed the playoffs for the second consecutive season and now enter a critical offseason in which they must find a way to upgrade their roster in order to vault back into NBA title contention. If they can add more weapons around Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, the Warriors should re-enter the title picture and perhaps be able to set up a Finals matchup with Durant, Harden and the Nets next summer.