Draymond Green made some interesting comments about Kevin Durant, the Toronto Raptors, and the 2019 NBA Finals. Here’s why those comments really don’t matter.
Ever the outspoken poet, Draymond Green is once again back in the limelight following a recent appearance Showtime’s “All The Smoke” with former Warriors Stephen Jackson and Matt Barnes. Green was pretty candid about all matters, especially the Toronto Raptors and the 2019 NBA Finals.
Green has no problem with letting his feelings known about most things and when the subject came to Kevin Durant and the 2019 NBA Finals, Green was pretty clear with his words. He said that the Toronto Raptors “wouldn’t have stood a chance” if Kevin Durant was healthy, suggesting that Game 5 of the NBA Finals was the only evidence needed.
“Once we got Kevin, we were f–king unstoppable,” Green said of the KD signing in 2016. “Even losing last year, Kevin don’t get hurt—you seen the game he came back in Game 5, I looked up, it was like six minutes to go, we had like 40 points in the first quarter—and so they wouldn’t have stood a chance if Kevin didn’t get hurt.”
Durant missed just over a month after straining his calf against the Houston Rockets in the Western Conference Semi-Finals and returned to the lineup in Game 5 of the NBA Finals, with the Warriors facing a 3-1 deficit at the hands of the Toronto Raptors.
During the first quarter, Durant was on fire, scoring 11 points, adding two rebounds, and a block but suffered a ruptured Achilles early in the second quarter: his season was over. The Raptors would go on to win the Finals in six games and, in doing so, secured their first-ever NBA championship.
Green, initially, may have a point. Durant is one of the best players on the planet when healthy. His presence for a sustained period would have only been a positive for the Golden State Warriors. Ultimately, though, it doesn’t matter.
The Warriors aren’t the first team in NBA history to be the victims of circumstance and they won’t be the last. Without forgetting it, the Toronto Raptors were pretty beat up throughout the playoffs themselves.
Ultimately, it just doesn’t matter. The series is over and the Toronto Raptors were crowned champions. Flags fly forever, but Green’s opinion will likely be lost in the archives. As it should be. Injuries are an unfortunate reality of basketball, but the Toronto Raptors aren’t to blame for that.
Everything past June 13, 2019, is all hypothetical. So, sure, Green probably has a point. At their best, the Golden State Warriors were virtually unstoppable, but you can only beat what’s in front of you – just like the Warriors did in 2015.
Green averaged close to a triple-double in the NBA Finals, but added five turnovers to proceedings and shot just 26-percent from deep. Certainly not his finest performance in the Finals.