Steve Kerr says Kevin Durant ‘is the guy that can put you over the hump’
Much like in last year’s NBA Finals, Kevin Durant has become the main bucket-getter for Steve Kerr and the Golden State Warriors in a series where the team is forced to fight fire with fire.
During Monday night’s 119-106 win, the Warriors gave Durant a beefy 27 shot attempts, doing just about everything the Houston Rockets have instilled not to do — a healthy dose of mid-range jumpers throughout the game, abusing every defender thrown at him throughout his 40 minutes in the game.
Durant kept the Warriors afloat during much of the first half, finally helping them break through in the third quarter, maintaining the lead the rest of the way.
Klay Thompson, who followed Durant’s 37-point effort with 28 of his own, noted his importance in this series.
“When he’s like that, he’s unstoppable,” said Thompson, according to Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post.
Kerr chipped in even more homage.
“This is why anybody would want him on their team,” Kerr said. “You think about a couple years ago, and we’re in the Finals and we couldn’t quite get over the hump. Kevin is the guy that puts you over the hump.”
“I don’t know what you do to guard him. He can get any shot he wants.”
Durant used and abused the Rockets defense, painfully cashing in on shots revered as “bad” shots in their layups, threes and frees long-known siren song.
A true renaissance mid-range artist, Durant pulverized great defenders like Chris Paul, P.J. Tucker, Trevor Ariza, and Clint Capela with a pull-up jump shot clinic — ruthlessly rising over them and finding his sweet spots all over the floor.