While the Golden State Warriors won 73 games during the season before signing Kevin Durant, there is a belief from Draymond Green that signing him was more of a necessity than a luxury.
“I don’t think that would have continued on without Kevin,” Green told ESPN. “Everybody started defending us a certain way, and it got a lot tougher. Every team in the NBA has started building their team to compete against us, to be able to guard us, to literally match us. So I think as great as it was — and I have no doubt in my mind we would have been right there again — I do also think it was getting way tougher for us to figure out.
“And then we added Kevin and it wasn’t.”
While the Warriors fairly comfortably won a championship in 2017, they very nearly lost to the Houston Rockets in 2018, and then lost to the Toronto Raptors in 2019 with Durant out for nearly the entire Finals.