— GoldenStateWarriors (@warriors) January 5, 2017
During the playoffs last spring, Kevin Durant showcased his burgeoning prowess as a legitimate two-way player by using his length to get in the passing lanes, disrupt smaller opponents on the switch, and block shots at the rim. He’s kept that trend going so far this season with the Warriors. On Tuesday, SB Nation made a compelling argument that Durant is a better rim protector than most of the NBA’s bona fide big men.
He’s averaging a career-best 1.5 blocks per game, and in the first half against the Blazers on Wednesday night, he racked up two of them on the same possession on back-to-back attempts. But he wasn’t finished. Durant also leads Golden State in scoring, so on the ensuing trip down the court, he pulled up and drained a deep three-pointer to put the exclamation point on a dominant sequence.
Durant finished the first half with 21 points on efficient 6-of-8 shooting, including 3-of-4 from behind the arc, to go along with three rebounds. However, Golden State is trailing Portland 71-69 at the break. The Blazers’ 71 points were the most the Warriors have allowed in a single half so far this season.