An old stat line from the 2018 Finals sheds light on the debate regarding who needed whom more – Kevin Durant or the Golden State Warriors
When one thinks of the greatest scorer of our time, the first picture that comes to mind is a 6’11” 240lb, Kevin Durant. The Slim Reaper has been undoubtedly one of the best players in the league ever since he was drafted. The 32-year-old has had many achievements to his name, including MVP honors, 2x Finals MVPs, 2x NBA Championships, and much more.
However, a lot of KD’s achievements get overlooked because of a decision he made in 2016. Durant left the Thunder to join a 73 win Warriors team. The team went on to win 2 championships on a trot, almost winning the third one too, but injuries got in the way. Durant is often mocked for his move, but it’s not like things came on a silver platter with the Dubs.
Was Kevin Durant more important to the Warriors than they were to him?
Despite being in a star-studded team, Kevin Durant never let his individual performance go down. During his time with the Dubs, Durant averaged just over 26ppg and had an increase in his assist numbers. Sure, the Warriors helped Durant develop into a better overall player, but Durant helped the Dubs a lot too.
This stat line from the 2018 Finals should help prove the point a bit. The Warriors swept the Cavs in the 2018 Finals. However, the case would’ve not been the same without KD. Making their way to Cleveland for Game 3, the entire Warriors roster were off their game, except for Durant. Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson combined for a mere 21 points, on 7-27 shooting. Durant scored 43 points, and carried the team past the line.
Game 3 of the 2018 NBA Finals. The Warriors won this game 110-102 to take a 3-0 lead. pic.twitter.com/8hwE4L4m8n
— Hoops Supply (@HoopsSupply) July 17, 2021
It is evident the Warriors needed Durant to win all those years. However, to say that Durant needed the Warriors any less may not be the right thing.