Video: Patrick Beverley explains how he guards Kevin Durant
Guarding Golden State Warriors star Kevin Durant is nearly impossible. He is a near-7-footer with a deadly fadeaway who has inside-the-gym range. Los Angeles Clippers guard Patrick Beverley had the unenviable task of matching up with Durant during the opening series of the playoffs, and he gave the NBA on TNT crew the breakdown of what he did to try to stop one of the best scorers in the league:
— NBA TV (@NBATV) May 6, 2019
Since Beverley is significantly shorter than Durant, the first tip he gave was denying the ball from even getting to the two-time champion. If the ball got to Durant, Beverley would hound him as much as possible, swiping at the ball and raising his hand to contest a possible jumper.
While this tactic might have worked out in Game 2 of the Warriors-Clippers series when Durant only scored 21 points on 5-of-8 shooting, it fell apart after that. The Slim Reaper went on to light the Clippers up for an average of 41.5 points a game through the next four games, all while shooting the lights out from every spot on the floor.
Even though he prides himself on his defense, Beverley shouldn’t feel bad about getting destroyed by Durant. He is an unstoppable scorer who does much of the same to any defender, no matter the tactic employed against him.
Durant will continue to get buckets, but it remains to be seen if his offensive prowess will be enough to get his Warriors past the Houston Rockets and into the conference finals.