Warriors

Warriors focus: Draymond Green

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Warriors focus: Draymond Green

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the fifth installment in a seven-part series that spotlights the seven new Warriors.
Part 1: Harrison BarnesPart 2: Kent Bazemore
Part 3: Andrew Bogut
Part 4: Festus Ezeli

The Warriors have made plenty of changes since the end of the 2011-12 season. They will likely have four first-year players on their roster come the start of the season, and they also acquired veterans Jarrett Jack and Carl Landry.Center Andrew Bogut came to the Warriors in March, but hes a newcomer, too, if you factor in that he still hasnt played a game for the team yet. With training camp set to begin in early October, lets begin our player-by-player analysis of the Warriors new players.Draymond Green, 6-foot-7, 230 pounds, small forwardpower forward.If theres one thing you continue to hear about forward Draymond Green its that hes smart and knows how to play. Yes, he fits the description of the classic tweener, but the Warriors certainly believe hell figure out a way to find a niche in the NBA.Make no mistake, if Green is playing power forward, hell be an undersized four. And if he finds himself playing small forward, well, then, hes going to be challenged athletically and in the quickness department.
But what Green does have is length, and that will give him the opportunity to combat some of the deficiencies hes likely to face navigating those two positions.Green anticipates well, he can pass and he fully understands how to play team defense the result of having played under Tom Izzo at Michigan State for four seasons. Those are the kinds of little things that make it possible for Green to get playing time -- though a close look at the Warriors roster indicates it wont be easy.For every positive, there seems to be a negative when it comes to Green, but you would expect as much from a player drafted in the second round. Hes not an elite athlete, doesnt have what you would call a great body, and isnt yet a consistent shooter.Still, the Warriors clearly believe the positives outweigh the negatives and theyre hoping that down the road Green turns into a contributor. How do we know the Warriors believe that?Well, because the Warriors gave Green a guaranteed contract for two seasons and a partial guarantee for Year No. 3. That doesnt happen to every second-round selection, thats for sure.Green is an OK mid-range shooter, and he seems to have the ability to be a 3-point threat down the road. More important, he plays with consistent energy right now, and he has shown a knack for rebounding the ball.Its nothing short of impressive that Green left Michigan State as the schools all-time leading rebounder, and averaged 10.6 rebounds his senior season for the Spartans.He might not be able to duplicate those numbers at the NBA level, but by the same token those kinds of numbers indicate that Green has very good anticipation, a nose for the ball and some good hands, too.One look at the lay of the land, though, and its tough to see Green getting minutes. Hes No. 3 on the depth chart at power forward behind David Lee and Carl Landry, so theres little to no playing time there.And its not like there are an abundance of minutes at small forward not with rookie Harrison Barnes, re-signed Brandon Rush and veteran Richard Jefferson all in the mix there.Then again, were still talking about a player who was drafted in the second round and doesnt have a definitive position. So, its less about whether Green is going to get playing time and more a question of whether he can play in the league.

Kevin Durant crushes hopes and dreams of Knicks fans everywhere

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AP

Kevin Durant crushes hopes and dreams of Knicks fans everywhere

Kevin Durant's summer of court dedications continued recently with a stop in New York City.

After christening a new court at the East Side Community High School in Manhattan, Durant stopped by the House of Hoops in Harlem.

Durant documented the whole trip in a YouTube video post on Tuesday.

While Durant was taking a photo with attendees, a hopeful Knicks fan had a question for the NBA Finals MVP.

"Yo, when are you coming to the Knicks, man?" the fan asked.

"Never," Durant said loudly with a smile on his face.

The Washington, D.C. native took another shot at New York City during the visit.

"NYC, the so-called Mecca of basketball. I'll say it's second in line Mecca of basketball next to Washington, D.C. But I still got love for NYC," Durant said.

Durant and the Warriors make their lone trip to Madison Square Garden to face the Knicks on Feb. 26, 2018.

Durant boasts second best odds to capture 2017-18 MVP award

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AP

Durant boasts second best odds to capture 2017-18 MVP award

The 2017-18 NBA season doesn't officially start until Oct. 17, but it's never too early to look at the MVP odds.

Russell Westbrook -- who won the award last year -- is the leader in the clubhouse (7/2), according to Bovada.

Kevin Durant -- the 2017 NBA Finals MVP -- is right on his heels with 9/2 odds.

Kawhi Leonard (13/2), LeBron James (15/2) and James Harden (8/1) round out the Top 5.

Ummmmm, Steph Curry?

[RELATED: Dahntay Jones: Steph Curry not a Top 10 player in NBA]

He checks in at No. 7 with 11/1 odds.

Giannis Antetokounmpo is sixth (17/2).

Draymond Green (60/1) has the 21st best odds.

Klay Thompson was not listed.

Last year, Curry finished in sixth place in the MVP voting -- three third-place votes, one fourth-place vote and 34 fifth-place votes.

Durant received two fifth-place votes.

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller