Although some fans believed Kevin Durant’s absence would have a major impact in the Golden State Warriors, things didn’t go like that, as the Dub Nation pulled off a great game on Monday night against the Portland Trail Blazers, looking like that powerful team they already were before the arrival of Kevin Durant.
They completely dominated the Trail Blazers thanks to Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, who carried the team and led it to win the first game of the Western Conference finals. Without KD the Warriors came back to move the ball quickly and play with that frenzy they were used to until a couple of seasons ago.
The Blazers indeed noted and suffered this, looking way disadvantage in front of the Warriors that didn’t have any mercy. Stephen Curry’s younger brother and Trail Blazers’ guard Seth Curry, noted how his big brother changed his style of play during Game 1, admitting it is harder to defend Golden State without Durant than with him to Sam Amick of The Athletic.
“I think they are harder to guard (without Durant),” Seth said. “They move around faster when he’s not out there. They’re definitely not a better team, but they’re harder to guard. Obviously, they play a different style of basketball when Steph and Klay (Thompson) are the focal points offensively, and we haven’t played that team in a while. We’ve got to reshift our focus and make some adjustments coming into Game 2.”
Seth is not actually implying the Warriors are a better team, just that guarding them becomes harder when KD is not on the court. Durant is more ball dominant than any other player in the Warriors’ ranks, so when he’s not around the ball flows better and we get to see those Warriors that enchanted everybody with their attractive game before the landing of Durantula.
Now it’s not clear whether Portland must wish Durant to come back soon or extend his absence for this series. They have to choose a poison and the options are anything but good.