NBA

Kevin Durant is aiming to become "one of the best defenders in the league"

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When Kevin Durant joined the Golden State Warriors, he was expected to bring his offensive prowess and help the team be more devastating on that end of the floor.

As arguably the best scorer in the league today, KD had no difficulty in delivering that to the team but to the surprise of many, he's been almost as effective on the defensive end.

The reigning Finals MVP was always an adequate defender but with the responsibility of scoring in Oklahoma City, he wasn't to show his qualities often defensively.

Since arriving in the Bay Area, the 29-year-old has moulded himself into an elite defender.

With head coach Steve Kerr's preference to play small, Durant is often the tallest player on the Warriors lineup on the floor and has embraced a role as a rim protector for the team.

Last season, he produced a career-best 1.6 blocks per game. In the Dubs' win over the New Orleans Pelicans on Friday, the small forward recorded a career-high seven blocks.

The eight-time All-Star credits the Golden State system for allowing him to be so productive defensively and believes he can compete with the best in the league on that end.

"I use my length," he said, according to Mark Medina of The Mercury News. "A couple years ago, I didn't really know how to play team defence that well. More and more, I'm learning about team defence and making multiple efforts. I'm able to get my hand on basketballs.

"I want to be one of the best defenders in the league,"

The veteran has fit seamlessly into the Warriors system and looks like he was made to play on this team as his style suits them perfectly.

The Defensive Player of the Year trophy currently resides in Oakland as Draymond Green scooped the prize last year.

He believes his teammates has all the defensive capabilities but won't receive the correct recognition for it.

"He'll never get credit for that," Green said, per Medina. "His offence is too pretty to ever get credit for that."

But Durant says he's not concerned by personal accolades and whether he gets any appreciation as his only focus is on getting it right and helping his team win.

"All-Defensive teams, that's on you guys," he said. "I don't really know. I'm trying to go out there and play. I'll let that stuff take care of it. I'd love to be on there, don't get me wrong. But I'm not stressing it."

The defending champions suffered their second loss of the new season already as they went down 111-101 to the Memphis Grizzlies at FedEx Forum.

Topics:
Golden State Warriors
Pacific Division
Western Conference
NBA
Draymond Green
Stephen Curry
Kevin Durant
Oklahoma City Thunder
Northwest Division

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