Durant: 'Who cares who's better between Westbrook, me?'

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Durant: 'Who cares who's better between Westbrook, me?'

Usually, Im the one asking the questions of NBA players butnot so on Friday night before the Thunder-Warriors game.Oklahoma City forward Kevin Durant had a few questions forme.I had just finished doing a television segment from thefloor of Oracle Arena a little after 5 p.m., while some Thunder players shot inthe background. I was a guest on Chronicle Live, and was talking about Durant,Russell Westbrook and the game itself.After I was done with the hit, I felt a hand on my shoulder.It was Durant, whom Id never met.
Hey my man, Ive got a question for you, Durant said. Whydoes everyone want to talk about who the best player is on our team, whether itsme or Russell? Why does everyone worry about that?Naturally, I was defensive and told Durant thats not what Iwas talking about on television.I know, he said. But youre in the media so maybe youknow why some writers and guys like that do it. I just dont get it.Im not sure, I answered.I mean, were on the same team, Russell and me, so whatdoes it matter? Durant said. Who cares whether hes better than me or Imbetter than him?Well, you know, the media does that kind of stuff everyonce in a while, I said, unabashedly throwing my media brethren under the bus.You know, it happens here some with Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry.Durant nodded.Thanks, Durant said. Its just that were on the sameteam, you now? So it doesnt matter. Who cares?Youre probably right, I said. I guess it doesnt reallymatter.With that, Durant thanked me one more time and while walkingaway said ... I just have a lot of questions, thats all.And after Durant walked away, a question crossed my mind: Isthere a better guy out there in the NBA than Kevin Durant?

Kerr clarifies Cousins' lack of NBA All-Star Game minutes

Kerr clarifies Cousins' lack of NBA All-Star Game minutes

OAKLAND -- Warriors coach Steve Kerr said Wednesday that the limited minutes allotted to former Kings center DeMarcus Cousins in the All-Star Game Sunday was unrelated to a pending trade.

Cousins played only two minutes -- the shortest stint by any All-Star since Connie Hawkins in 1971 -- because that was the big man’s wish.

“I asked every guy before the game started how much they wanted to play,” said Kerr, who coached the Western Conference All-Stars for the second time in three seasons. “He told me he wanted to play two minutes. He was serious. He said he was banged up. It had nothing to do with (a trade).”

After six-plus seasons in Sacramento, Cousins was traded to New Orleans shortly after the All-Star Game, with the official announcement coming Monday.

Kerr initially thought Cousins was requesting to be limited to two minutes per half. When Kerr and assistant coach Mike Brown conveyed that plan, Cousins was quick to clarify.

“He said, ‘No, no: two minutes total,’” Kerr recalled.

When Kerr pointed out that Cousins actually played two minutes, 24 seconds, the newest Pelican flashed a sense of humor.

“I went over? By 24 seconds?” Cousins said. “That should be a fine for you, coach.”

Warriors big men Pachulia, West close to return

Warriors big men Pachulia, West close to return

OAKLAND -- The Warriors reconvened Wednesday and received good news, going through a light scrimmage that for the first time in weeks included centers Zaza Pachulia and David West.

The better news for the Warriors is that both were upgraded to questionable and could return as soon as Thursday night, when they face the Clippers at Oracle Arena.

“I would say there’s a good chance both of them would play tomorrow,” coach Steve Kerr said. “We’ll see.”

Pachulia has missed the last eight games after straining his right rotator cuff on Jan. 29 at Portland.

“The pain is gone,” Pachulia told CSNBayArea.com. “I can’t say I’ll be cleared, but there is no more pain.”

Pachulia is expected to reclaim his starting role despite Kerr’s acknowledging that JaVale McGee has been “fantastic” while starting the last eight games.

“I haven’t decided yet,” Kerr said. “I’ve got to make that decision. I want to make sure first that (Pachulia) is healthy. And it depends, too, on what happens with David. Is David healthy? Are they both playing? There’s kind of a domino effect on all of this stuff.

“I would anticipate that, ultimately, Zaza will be back starting. I liked that whole rotation. JaVale has helped us dramatically, and he’ll be playing a role. It’s a center-by-committee situation. But right away, we’ll see how we play it.”

West has missed the last 14 games with a non-displaced fracture in his left thumb, sustained Jan. 18 against Oklahoma City.

West was to undergo an X-ray late Wednesday, after which it was anticipated he would receive a clean slate.

The only players that did not scrimmage are All-Stars Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson. All four were given an extra day off in the wake of their participation in All-Star Weekend in New Orleans.

“Just being in New Orleans for those four days, there’s no rest whatsoever,” Kerr said. “Those are the guys who played the most minutes. The All-Star break is such a great time to recharge.”