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Andre Iguodala doesn’t like how people try to ‘divide’ Warriors

Andre Iguodala, Warriors

The Golden State Warriors were not always the most reviled team in the league. When they won their first championship in 2015, the Dubs actually appeared to be the new darlings of the league. With MVP Stephen Curry and head coach Steve Kerr continuing to revolutionize the game of basketball by winning with a perimeter-oriented style, it seemed as though the Warriors were on the brink of something special.

Indeed, Golden State would win 73 games (an NBA record) during the 2015-16 regular season, but their historic collapse in those NBA Finals and the subsequent signing of Kevin Durant has shifted the narrative. The Warriors have become the villains of the NBA, similar to how opposing fans jeered the “Big Three” in Miami.

And this season, a lot of the focus surrounding the team has not been on their outstanding play, but rather on their future as a collective. Fans have salivated at the thought that Kevin Durant (who is an unrestricted free agent) may be headed elsewhere after this season, and numerous organizations will likely make big pitches to both Durant and Klay Thompson (also unrestricted, though he is likely to re-sign) this summer.

With so much of the talk pertaining to an impending breakup, Warriors swingman Andre Iguodala told Rich Bucher of Bleacher Report he does not like how the outside sports world tries to “divide” the team:

“That’s what annoys me,” Iguodala says. “Why does it have to be, ‘You’re better this way,’ or ‘You’re worse that way’? That’s what myself, Shaun [Livingston] and [Andrew] Bogut are here for; we’re able to adjust no matter who is playing. I love seeing KD do what he does. Everybody on our team does. When a guy goes down, you usually see someone step up. When we play other teams and a main guy goes down, what happens? We let our guard down, and some guy who averages eight points a game gets 25. We’re like, ‘Who is this dude?’ His opportunity just presented itself.

“Same with us. When KD isn’t out there, we know we have to work harder, so it’s a different type of thing. And now we’ve had success and it’s like, ‘See what happened when KD’s not there?’ No! When I came out of that Houston series, with no KD there was more stress on my body and now something flares up. That’s because KD wasn’t there, but nobody is going to say that. I’m playing 40 minutes a game vs. Houston and then hobbling around on one leg the next series. I missed KD. But we win 4-0, so no one is thinking about that.”

It’s unclear when Durant will play in the NBA Finals against the Toronto Raptors, but DeMarcus Cousins has been activated for Game 1.