The Kevin Durant signing casts a new set of challenges for the Golden State Warriors, which possess a foursome of talent that cannot be matched by arguably any team in league history. But basketball is more chemistry than algebra. Golden State can’t just combine the previous scoring averages from heir four-headed monster and start counting their rings. The Warriors’ success will require significant sacrifice from all parties involved, but some will have to sacrifice more than others.
When looking at Steph Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, the most natural hierarchy would place Klay on the bottom rung due to his skill set. He needs to do the least in order to be effective. However, Klay was a shooting star for most of the 2016 playoffs, the man who single-handedly resurrected the Warriors from elimination in Game 6 against the Thunder.
He talked to ESPN’s Ethan Sherwood Strauss about his approach to sacrificing shots and attention for championships.
“I look at a guy like Manu Ginobili who came off the bench almost his entire career,” Thompson said. “Never averaged more than 20 points a game, but he’s a four-time champion, you know? He could have easily been on another team and averaged 25 a game, but he sacrificed to win, and that’s what I expect to do next year. I don’t care about averaging 25 or even 20. I just want to finish it out and get back to the Finals and enjoy that ride.”
Klay has a healthy perspective on team success, but it will be interesting to see how this plays out for the warriors. How will Thompson react the first time Durant, who isn’t quite the shooter of Thompson’s esteemed caliber, goes 6-of-24 while Klay only gets eight shots in a loss?
The good news: That situation may not arise all season, because the Warriors could very well win 75 games. But, it’s possible to find at lease one chink in the Warrior’s shiny armor.