Warriors

Kevin Durant rips into Warriors coach Steve Kerr's motion offense

Kevin Durant rips into Warriors coach Steve Kerr's motion offense

Kevin Durant has spoken. 

After ditching the Warriors for the Nets in free agency with little-to-no reasoning, Durant opened up on everything from his messy Oklahoma City exit to his Achilles rehab to his Warriors tenure. That includes how he fit into Warriors coach Steve Kerr's offense. 

Durant previously has said he simply felt the Nets were the best destination for him. He didn't even talk with Brooklyn's front office -- he just knew. But perhaps style of play fit into his decision as well. 

Entering this summer's free agency fresh off an NBA Finals defeat and a torn Achilles, a part of Durant felt Golden State had reached its ceiling. And much of that has to do with Kerr's motion offense. 

"The motion offense we run in Golden State, it only works to a certain point," Durant said to the Wall Street Journal's J.R. Moehringer. "We can totally rely on our system for maybe the first two rounds. Then the next two rounds we're going to have to mix in individual play. We've got to throw teams off, because they're smarter in that round of playoffs. 

"So now I have to dive into my bag, deep, to create stuff on my own, off the dribble, isos, pick-and-rolls, more so than let the offense create points for me." 

Durant, 30, is one of the greatest isolation players in NBA history. He can score off a jump shot, he can drive to the rim or he can back you down and fade over you with his 7-foot frame. But that's not how Kerr's offense works. 

In three seasons with the Warriors, Durant only hoisted 17.5 shots per game, down 1.6 from his 19.1 attempts across nine seasons with Seattle and Oklahoma City. On the other hand, his efficiency shot up as a Warrior under Kerr. 

KD shot 52.4 percent from the floor with the Warriors as opposed to 48.3 percent with the Sonics/Thunder. The ball wasn't in his hands as much, but Warriors' two championships makes it clear the system worked. 

Durant and Kerr were at odds a bit last season, especially down the stretch. Player and coach even disputed how much the two-time Finals MVP should shoot during the Warriors first-round matchup against the Clippers, with Kerr being in favor of more shots for his star forward. 

[RELATED: Kerr, Barbosa share special moment at FIBA World Cup]

Only time will tell if Durant is correct about Kerr and the Warriors. The same goes for if his game will work under new coach Kenny Atkinson in Brooklyn.

But regardless of what KD believes about Kerr's system, banners show it was pretty damn good basketball.

Warriors list three players as probable for season opener vs Clippers

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USATSI

Warriors list three players as probable for season opener vs Clippers

With Opening Night just two days away, the Warriors finally are starting to get healthy.

After practice Tuesday, the team announced that Kevon Looney (hamstring), Alec Burks (ankle) and Marquese Chriss (left toe infection) are probable against the Clippers.

"Last couple days, getting a lot of work in. Been able to play some 5-on-5, so feeling good," Looney told reporters. "I tweaked my hamstring -- second time doing it in a couple weeks -- so just wanted to play it safe, and make sure I was 100 percent before I got back out there and play.

"Feel great now, feel comfortable on the court -- trying to get my wind under me."

It's unclear at this point if the 23-year-old -- who missed all five preseason games -- or Chriss will start at center.

Looney revealed that the first hamstring tweak occured during a workout in the summer.

[RELATEDMagic explains why Jordan says Curry not Hall of Famer yet]

"I was ready for training camp, I was feeling good the first couple days," he explained. "I just aggravated it so we wanted to be safe."

Burks, meanwhile, missed the entire preseason slate of games after rolling his ankle in practice the day before the opener.

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Warriors predictions: How new trio of stars could finish statistically

Warriors predictions: How new trio of stars could finish statistically

Editor's note: Grant Liffmann (@grantliffmann) is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders, which airs on NBC Sports Bay Area 90 minutes before each home game and 60 minutes after every game. Each week, Grant will drop his Outsider Observation on the state of the Dubs.

The Warriors are on the cusp of a new era of basketball at Chase Center. Led by familiar faces in Steve Kerr, Steph Curry, Draymond Green (and from the sideline Klay Thompson) the Warriors are about to embark on a season that will feature a youthful roster with a new look.

With a revamped cast of characters will come different team strategy and chemistry that should lead to bigger responsibilities for key Warriors.

Here are some statistical predictions for these players:

Steph Curry

Over 32 points per game
Over 14 three-point attempts per game

It has been well-chronicled how much the Warriors will rely on Steph to lead them this season, and with that will come an increase in usage on the court. Curry's season-high scoring average was 30.1 points per game in his unanimous MVP season of 2015-16.

That season, he attempted a little over 20 field goals a game and 11 three-pointers a game. I expect both of those numbers to rise, especially his attempts from long distance.

Last season Curry took a career-high 11.7 shots per game from deep, but that included him sharing the ball with Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson. With an increase in volume, opposing defense's attention and more energy exertion could come with a less glossy shooting efficiency, especially from within the arc.

But if the Warriors have any chance at "surprising" folks this season, Steph is going to have to lead the charge and insert himself back into the MVP conversation. These numbers should do that.

Draymond Green

Over 33 percent three-point percentage

Since the 2015-16 campaign in which Green shot a career-high three-point percentage of nearly 39 percent, his ability from long-range has faltered.

ver the past three seasons, Draymond has not surpassed 31 percent from deep, which has allowed defenses to sag off of him and dare him to shoot. This season he will have the green light to shoot more, which should help his confidence to fire away even when his shot is not falling earlier in the game.

It is highly unlikely that Green ever repeats his 39 percent mark, but shooting over 33 percent would be enough to keep a defense more honest, and allow more spacing for the offense. 

D'Angelo Russell

Over 23 points per game
Over 38 percent three-point percentage

Like Curry, the Warriors will be relying on Russell to put up points and lead their offense.

The staggering between Curry and Russell's minutes will help him get the rhythm and volume he needs to reach a new career-high in points per game, surpassing the 21.1 he scored last season with the Nets.

On the flip side, when Curry and Russell share the floor, D'Angelo will have more open shots than he has ever experienced before in his young NBA career, which in turn should be able to raise his three-point percentage over his career-high from last season, 36.9 percent.

[RELATED: KD forgives Raptors fans, but says Warriors fans are better]

The ingredients are in place for the 23-year-old to shine with his new team.