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Warriors vs. Wolves: In defense of Kevin Durant

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Warriors fans have been complaining about Kevin Durant’s isolations, but Marcus Thompson II says that’s not as big a problem as people think.

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NBA: Golden State Warriors at San Antonio Spurs Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

The Golden State Warriors will face the Minnesota Timberwolves tonight at 5 p.m. PST after a tough loss to the San Antonio Spurs last night.

As people tend to obsess over every step Kevin Durant takes, Marcus Thompson II of The Athletic addressed the matter of whether Durant’s isolations are taking away from the team’s offense.

James Harden leads the NBA in isolations per game with 16.8. John Wall, before he got hurt and knocked out for the season, was the next highest at 5.5 per game. Russell Westbrook and Chris Paul average 4.9.

Guess how many Durant averages: 4.0. That’s up from 2.5 in 2016 (and 3.5 from last season). So, we’re talking not even two possessions more per game.

Durant is also averaging 2.6 post-ups per game. So, combined, on average, that’s 6.6 times per game when Durant just does his thing. Kind of hard to believe that’s enough to drag down the Warriors’ offensive efficiency. That’s a mere 6.5 percent of Warriors possessions that are used on Durant going 1-on-1, up from 4 percent in 2016-17.

Anyway, this conversation probably won’t be going away any time soon, whether Durant stays or just leaves somewhere.

So it’s up to you whether you keep it going tonight or just focus on the game in front of us.