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  • ReubenJRD wrote: View Post
    Considering the importance of this season, I'm sure Nurse and staff want everybody in from day 1.

    I cannot wait to see the Lowry/Leonard photos from media day.
    The leagues lankiest stretchiest and the leagues thiccest caboose

    Stretchy and Stocky
    It's Klaw Season. Time to hunt.

    Comment


    • I wanna have a serious conversation about this.

      Is Kawhi Leonard a better overall player than Durant?

      As much as people have been calling him 'arguably' the second best player in the world -- including myself -- I feel like he's behind Durant and LeBron.

      To illustrate it:

      Lebron
      -
      -
      -
      -
      -
      -
      Durant
      -
      Kawhi
      -
      -
      -
      everyone else

      Am I the only one who's really starting to think hard about this whole "it's because of the Spurs system?"

      Comment


      • ReubenJRD wrote: View Post
        I wanna have a serious conversation about this.

        A ---Is Kawhi Leonard a better overall player than Durant?

        As much as people have been calling him 'arguably' the second best player in the world -- including myself -- B ----I feel like he's behind Durant and LeBron.

        To illustrate it:

        Lebron
        -
        -
        -
        -
        -
        -
        Durant
        -
        Kawhi
        -
        -
        -
        everyone else

        C----Am I the only one who's really starting to think hard about this whole "it's because of the Spurs system?"
        A+B.Its close. Durant would seem to get the nod offensively... a 6'11" guy who is coordinated.. can run... can play down low if he wants to and can can break your heart with the longest of 3 balls... He wants the ball when the game is on the line and his team does too. I think that trait is what caused the rift in OKC as Westbrooke is wired the same way. I still can't believe he made that shot to beat the raps in overtime a couple three years back. KD's defense is good when it matters late in the game and when the game is being won or lost.

        Leonard has a far less flamboyant style but he is still lethal when he is zoned in on offense. He is physically bigger and stronger so he can Jim Brown his way down the lane when KD is more finesse and can post up just about any SF and put a good old fashioned beatdown on them. He can hit the long ball but doesn't take as many as KD does. He is ahead of KD on defense as its part and parcel of his overall game and he comes to play every night on the defensive side of the ball.

        WIth the new NBA rules favouring offense and lots of it I think on that basis KD is a micron or two ahead of Leonard. These are the next two guys chosen for the pick up game right after Lebron.

        C We shouldn't be losing any sleep wondering if Leonard is a system guy. He isn't. He makes the other guys in the system look good because of his raw ability.

        25 days till camp opens.
        Last edited by Demographic Shift; Sat Sep 1, 2018, 12:26 AM.

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            • ReubenJRD wrote: View Post
              I wanna have a serious conversation about this.

              Is Kawhi Leonard a better overall player than Durant?

              As much as people have been calling him 'arguably' the second best player in the world -- including myself -- I feel like he's behind Durant and LeBron.

              To illustrate it:

              Lebron
              -
              -
              -
              -
              -
              -
              Durant
              -
              Kawhi
              -
              -
              -
              everyone else

              Am I the only one who's really starting to think hard about this whole "it's because of the Spurs system?"
              I think you'd be hard pressed to find NBA fans outside of Raptors forums who would call Kawhi the second best player in the world. Especially given that he just missed an entire season.

              He was my pick for MVP last year before he went down and I think he has a shot at it again if he comes back at 100%, but that doesn't put him ahead of Durant. Durant has become one of the most unlikeable personalities in the NBA but he is still an all time great scorer and solid on defense.

              So I'm not sure what the serious conversation is. The general opinion is that Durant > Kawhi, not the other way around.

              As far as system goes, I'm not concerned about it. It's a bigger issue for making role players look good, and our system took a big step forward last year anyway. Kawhi should have every opportunity to excel, the biggest x-factor being health.

              Comment


              • Scraptor wrote: View Post
                I think you'd be hard pressed to find NBA fans outside of Raptors forums who would call Kawhi the second best player in the world. Especially given that he just missed an entire season.

                He was my pick for MVP last year before he went down and I think he has a shot at it again if he comes back at 100%, but that doesn't put him ahead of Durant. Durant has become one of the most unlikeable personalities in the NBA but he is still an all time great scorer and solid on defense.

                So I'm not sure what the serious conversation is. The general opinion is that Durant > Kawhi, not the other way around.

                As far as system goes, I'm not concerned about it. It's a bigger issue for making role players look good, and our system took a big step forward last year anyway. Kawhi should have every opportunity to excel, the biggest x-factor being health.
                Lots of people had that opinion before he got injured, so it's really just the asterisk surrounding his health. You could rephrase that to.... "When healthy, Kawhi is the 2nd best player in the NBA" and you won't get too many people disagreeing with that statement, or at least engaging in a debate between Kawhi & Durant, plus maybe Curry & Davis.

                Jalen: Kawhi is the 2nd best player in the NBA
                http://www.espn.com/video/clip?id=23799478

                Comment


                • Thank you all for the replies!

                  Demographic Shift wrote: View Post
                  A+B.Its close. Durant would seem to get the nod offensively... a 6'11" guy who is coordinated.. can run... can play down low if he wants to and can can break your heart with the longest of 3 balls... He wants the ball when the game is on the line and his team does too. I think that trait is what caused the rift in OKC as Westbrooke is wired the same way. I still can't believe he made that shot to beat the raps in overtime a couple three years back. KD's defense is good when it matters late in the game and when the game is being won or lost.

                  Leonard has a far less flamboyant style but he is still lethal when he is zoned in on offense. He is physically bigger and stronger so he can Jim Brown his way down the lane when KD is more finesse and can post up just about any SF and put a good old fashioned beatdown on them. He can hit the long ball but doesn't take as many as KD does. He is ahead of KD on defense as its part and parcel of his overall game and he comes to play every night on the defensive side of the ball.

                  WIth the new NBA rules favouring offense and lots of it I think on that basis KD is a micron or two ahead of Leonard. These are the next two guys chosen for the pick up game right after Lebron.

                  C We shouldn't be losing any sleep wondering if Leonard is a system guy. He isn't. He makes the other guys in the system look good because of his raw ability.

                  25 days till camp opens.
                  I actually agree entirely with your breakdown, and it's interesting you point out the emphasis in today's league offensively.

                  The more marketable, sexier-style-of-play does go Durant's way, and playing on the best team in the league probably does give him the nod above Kawhi from a viewership standpoint.

                  Kawhi has really only been dominant for one season; the 2017 season before being undercut by Zaza. As great and elite as he was, I feel like it's still a sample size, and this'll be the first time where he's on a team where the focus isn't on the system, but on Kawhi as a player.

                  Maury wrote: View Post
                  I’m being 100% honest here when I say that if given the choice between Durant and Kawhi at the beginning of last season I would have picked Kawhi. He seems to drive winning better IMO, he’s more clutch, he’s more consistent defensively, and he doesn’t devolve into a ball hog the way KD does sometimes, even on the warriors. Therefore I’m very happy that the second best player in the league (in my opinion) is on our team for at least a year.
                  I'd pick Kawhi, too. 90% bias because he's actually a goddamn Toronto Raptor, however, thinking about how elite he is defensively actually soothes the thought of having to play against teams with superstar wing players.

                  No more Turkoglu, no more Terrence Ross, no more DeMar DeRozan, no more DeMarre Carroll having to worry about guarding the LeBrons-Durants-Giannis's of the world.

                  Scraptor wrote: View Post
                  I think you'd be hard pressed to find NBA fans outside of Raptors forums who would call Kawhi the second best player in the world. Especially given that he just missed an entire season.

                  He was my pick for MVP last year before he went down and I think he has a shot at it again if he comes back at 100%, but that doesn't put him ahead of Durant. Durant has become one of the most unlikeable personalities in the NBA but he is still an all time great scorer and solid on defense.

                  So I'm not sure what the serious conversation is. The general opinion is that Durant > Kawhi, not the other way around.

                  As far as system goes, I'm not concerned about it. It's a bigger issue for making role players look good, and our system took a big step forward last year anyway. Kawhi should have every opportunity to excel, the biggest x-factor being health.
                  golden wrote: View Post
                  Lots of people had that opinion before he got injured, so it's really just the asterisk surrounding his health. You could rephrase that to.... "When healthy, Kawhi is the 2nd best player in the NBA" and you won't get too many people disagreeing with that statement, or at least engaging in a debate between Kawhi & Durant, plus maybe Curry & Davis.

                  Jalen: Kawhi is the 2nd best player in the NBA
                  http://www.espn.com/video/clip?id=23799478
                  As Golden had replied, aside from Jalen, plenty of basketball analysts do call Kawhi the 2nd best player in the world.

                  Durant is the better player offensively -- a couple tiers above. However, Kawhi is miles and miles better defensively. So, overall, you'd have to think those level out at some point. Durant is solid defensively, Kawhi is elite offensively.

                  From my equation: Durant solid D + all-time offense vs. Kawhi all-time D + elite/efficient offense = Kawhi, slightly?

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                  • ReubenJRD wrote: View Post

                    From my equation: Durant solid D + all-time offense vs. Kawhi all-time D + elite/efficient offense = Kawhi, slightly?
                    For me the eye test gives the edge to Durant. Durant has a unique size and athleticism that allows him greater advantages over matchups including bigs that Kawhi just cannot do. Kawhi has to rely more on his team mates and own strength to get him where he can succeed.
                    Last edited by Hotshot; Sat Sep 1, 2018, 03:17 PM.

                    Comment


                    • Hotshot wrote: View Post
                      For me the eye test gives the edge to Durant. Durant has a unique size and athleticism that allows him greater advantages over matchups including bigs that Kawhi just cannot do.
                      The eye test for Durant is somewhat rose colored for the last 2 years. KD has all-NBA offensive weapons like Steph and Klay to keep the opposing defense from focussing on him and stretch the floor - best shooting backcourt in the history of the NBA. I mean, the Steph-KD pick & roll on it's own already stacks the deck highly in KD's favor, putting him in a position to succeed like nobody else in the NBA.

                      On defense, KD has all-NBA defenders like Klay, Draymond & Iggy to lock down the best offensive player on the opposition team. Sure, KD occasionally guards Lebron from time to time, but the Warriors throw multiple looks at him and didn't even need KD to beat him. With Kawhi, he had to be both an elite offensive player and a perennial DPOY candidate. That's really, really hard to do.

                      Comment


                      • Maybe you are right but you are after all comparing 16'-17' Kawhi to current form Durant. You cannot be certain at this high level after the weird injury that Kawhi sustain (that placed him on the shelf for pretty much a whole season) that he will duplicate the same production after not doing so in previous years. While Durant was pretty much an All-star since his first year in the NBA.

                        Kawhi's got to prove em again this season if he wants to be in the conversation of being better than Durant.

                        Comment


                        • Hotshot wrote: View Post
                          For me the eye test gives the edge to Durant. Durant has a unique size and athleticism that allows him greater advantages over matchups including bigs that Kawhi just cannot do. Kawhi has to rely more on his team mates and own strength to get him where he can succeed.
                          That's what I think, too. By watching, Durant has a size advantage that no NBA player I think has ever had.

                          He's nearly 7'0 tall, with guard skills, and is incredibly quick and agile. Leonard, by NBA standards, is the average wing size at 6'7, with today's type of length that most teams tend to gawk over, and.... those hands... As you said, Durant has the size to dominate wings and guards, even bigs, and can defend from 1 to 5 on length alone.

                          golden wrote: View Post
                          The eye test for Durant is somewhat rose colored for the last 2 years. KD has all-NBA offensive weapons like Steph and Klay to keep the opposing defense from focussing on him and stretch the floor - best shooting backcourt in the history of the NBA. I mean, the Steph-KD pick & roll on it's own already stacks the deck highly in KD's favor, putting him in a position to succeed like nobody else in the NBA.

                          On defense, KD has all-NBA defenders like Klay, Draymond & Iggy to lock down the best offensive player on the opposition team. Sure, KD occasionally guards Lebron from time to time, but the Warriors throw multiple looks at him and didn't even need KD to beat him. With Kawhi, he had to be both an elite offensive player and a perennial DPOY candidate. That's really, really hard to do.
                          Hotshot wrote: View Post
                          Maybe you are right but you are after all comparing 16'-17' Kawhi to current form Durant. You cannot be certain at this high level after the weird injury that Kawhi sustain (that placed him on the shelf for pretty much a whole season) that he will duplicate the same production after not doing so in previous years. While Durant was pretty much an All-star since his first year in the NBA.

                          Kawhi's got to prove em again this season if he wants to be in the conversation of being better than Durant.
                          I think to make it a fairer comparison, we have to use Durant in Oklahoma City -- he has the ball more often, without as much help, etc.

                          He was already an MVP, so, I think him being on the Warriors actually hinders the argument of being the second best player.

                          Again, with all that star power around him, and all of that help defensively, in my opinion, it actually covers a lot of what Durant would have to exert energy to do in order to make that team that great. Durant is a great player, with or without all that talent on Golden State, but he certainly doesn't have to do as much in order for that team to succeed. Hell, they never needed him in the first place.

                          On the other hand, as golden mentioned, Kawhi has been an elite and -- to take it further -- EFFICIENT offensive player and a DPOY candidate -- or at least played that well at one point. When Durant won the MVP (maybe the numbers speak otherwise, and I'll gladly admit that I was wrong) I don't think he was much of a threat defensively.

                          Funny enough, that year, the Spurs won the chip and Kawhi was the Finals MVP.

                          Comment


                          • I think you are underselling KD a bit. He was a bad defender coming into the NBA and in his first couple years, but has developed into a 2 ways force. At times he is the best defender on the floor because he can just do things nobody else can. He got a decent amout of votes for all defense this year, so he clearly is more than an adequate defender. I would argue that its hard to truly appreciate how good Durant is, playing on this Warriors team.

                            That being said, I think I would take Kawhi over KD.

                            Comment


                            • Kawhi was the 2nd best player in the league 2 years ago before the injury. NBA is a "what have you done for me lately" league. People forget how good he is because he only played 9 games last year. Durant on the other hand won another fake championship and another fake Finals MVP Award last year.

                              When healthy, Kawhi > Durant
                              Mamba Mentality

                              Comment


                              • DogeLover1234 wrote: View Post
                                I think you are underselling KD a bit. He was a bad defender coming into the NBA and in his first couple years, but has developed into a 2 ways force. At times he is the best defender on the floor because he can just do things nobody else can. He got a decent amout of votes for all defense this year, so he clearly is more than an adequate defender. I would argue that its hard to truly appreciate how good Durant is, playing on this Warriors team.

                                That being said, I think I would take Kawhi over KD.
                                Fair point, however, before he came to Golden State, remember, many questioned whether he was good enough defensively to be a contributor on that end. Draymond Green's mother even mentioned she was surprised that KD could play defence.

                                I think we had the season before he left for Golden State to appreciate the true superstar that he is. He and Russ were nearly unstoppable that series before the freefall.

                                I think he's the beneficiary of a lot of good defenders around him, and that he's picking up a lot of the sanitation that breaks through every now and then.

                                I don't mean to undersell, or sound harsh -- Durant HAS become a solid defender, and that's likely from playing motivated alongside guys like Klay, Iggy, and esp. Draymond who continually harps at Durant.

                                He was also very deserving of those all-defensive team votes, but that's an entirely different thing when we compare mere votes to a DPOY candidate nearly every year.

                                It just goes back to my equation: KD all-time offense + solid D vs. Kawhi elite/efficient offense + all-time D.

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