Warriors

NBA panel predicts Kevin Durant re-signs with Warriors in free agency

NBA panel predicts Kevin Durant re-signs with Warriors in free agency

Programming note: Watch Saturday's Warriors-Pistons game streaming live at 4 p.m. PT on the MyTeams app.

Kevin Durant is in the midst of the best regular-season basketball he has played as a member of the Warriors. The "regular season" caveat is important because playoff performance is weighted significantly higher, and the guy is the two-time reigning NBA Finals MVP.

We should never ever forget that in 2017, Durant averaged 35.2 points, 8.2 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 1.6 blocks and 1.0 steals in the Finals, while shooting 55.6 percent overall and 47.4 percent from deep. That is truly mind-boggling. But we digress ...

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While almost all of the focus should be on what Durant is currently doing on the court, we simply can't ignore the other question that will hover over everything the next six months: "What will Durant do in free agency?"

Well, the folks over at ESPN asked 38 of their experts (meaning 38 people who cover the NBA) to predict the team Durant will play for next season.

The results:
1) Warriors -- 17 votes
2) Knicks -- 10 votes
3) Lakers -- 8 votes
4) Clippers -- 3 votes

I believe the Lakers are the biggest threat to Golden State, but that's a conversation for another time.

Yes, you probably think about Durant's future nearly every day and go back-and-forth with your prediction. That's human nature, and we don't blame you for that. But try to simply appreciate the opportunity to watch him night in and night out ...

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

How Steph Curry, Warriors' brand continues to make huge global impact

How Steph Curry, Warriors' brand continues to make huge global impact

Despite the down season and not being one of the 22 teams invited to the Orlando restart, the Warriors still manage to be a global phenomenon.

In an interview with The Athletic, P.K. Ong, co-founder of the SG Basketball academy which has multiple venues in Singapore, said that’s apparent. It showed quickly with the pace of the way they sell out of a certain superstar’s jersey. 

“Whenever you go into a (sporting goods) store, Steph Curry jerseys are the first thing you see when you walk in," Ong said. "They’re everywhere,."

Ong also told The Athletic, the shift changed in who the kids he coached looked up to off the court as well. They went from being huge Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant fans to wanting to shoot three-pointers like Steph.

Don’t we all want that?

Back in 2018, a group of the campers joined Ong for a trip to the Bay Area. They went on a tour of the Warriors practice facility and ran drills with some of the coaching staff. It was a “dream come true,” for the kids.

The global influence doesn’t stop there. Klay Thompson, AKA #ChinaKlay made a persona for himself when with his popularity surging in the country and his shoe deal with the Chinese brand Anta.

And I mean, check out the turnout when he arrives:

[RELATED: Bronny James jokes Steph is his dad]

Steph made a trip to Japan last summer with hopes of growing the game of basketball across the world, and the moment he got off the plane, it was chaos, but in the best way.

He, along with the team, make an impact everywhere they go. 

Warriors' Rick Welts shares funny story of being mistaken for Joe Lacob

Warriors' Rick Welts shares funny story of being mistaken for Joe Lacob

Warriors team president Rick Welts went to Croatia for vacation in the summer of 2018.

Wearing a Warriors hat in a restaurant resulted in a waiter saying, "Curry, yeah!" Welts recently explained to Daniel Brown of The Athletic.

Soon thereafter, other employees began to believe they were in the presence of Warriors owner Joe Lacob.

“He just started screaming to his co-workers there, ‘Joe Lacob! Joe Lacob! Joe Jacob!' " Welts told Brown. “I was waving, ‘No, no, no!’ but I gave up.

"So, I impersonated Joe Lacob — and got really good service from this really tiny restaurant in Croatia.”

Now that is a savvy play from a seasoned veteran.

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Welts has helped turn the Warriors into a global brand, which is why the franchise elected not to change its name to the San Francisco Warriors when they relocated from Oakland to Chase Center.

"What's happened in the interim is the Warriors, with the success we've had on the floor, have now become the team that everyone knows around the world," Welts told Warriors radio voice Tim Roye in April 2017. "More Steph Curry jerseys are sold around the world than any other player in the NBA. More Warriors merchandise than any other team in the NBA.

"So now, I think we've done a 100 percent reversal, saying, 'You know, we have a lot of equity in this Golden State name and it really means something around the world.' "

And that includes Croatia.

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