Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry in Top 3 of Sports Illustrated’s Top 100 NBA players list
The splashy duo of Golden State Warriors stars Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry cracked the Top 3 of Sports Illustrated’s Top 100 NBA players list, ranking second and third, respectively, under the top-ranked LeBron James.
Kevin Durant elevated himself to James’ level during the past two NBA Finals, taking home two consecutive Finals MVP awards and two championships in two seasons with the Warriors. To some, he and James are 1A and 1B for the title of best active player in the league, and the numbers are surely there for a more effective and ultimately well-rounded Durant, who has started to excel at the defensive end, while James is taking more plays off from the less-lauded end of the floor.
Stephen Curry was one dubious game away from snatching the Finals MVP award from Durant, posting a solid 27.5 points, 6.0 rebounds, 6.8 assists and 1.5 steals per game in The Finals — capping it with a 37-point destruction of the Cleveland Cavaliers in a 23-point rout to sweep the series in four games. He’s proven to have the single most devastating shot in basketball, and proved it so at the biggest stage, hitting five or more treys in three of the four games of the sweep.
The Warriors’ lone exception to the Top 25 was new addition DeMarcus Cousins, who wound up ranked 68th, despite coming off a career-best season — while other players who suffered season-ending injuries like Kyrie Irving, Gordon Hayward, and Kawhi Leonard didn’t see the same hit in ranking.