The two-time defending champion Golden State Warriors were thrown off their game big time Monday night against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Up 31 about midway through the third quarter, Golden State blew what seemed to be an insurmountable lead. The backdrop here being a rift between Warriors star Kevin Durant and Clippers guard Patrick Beverley.
Both got tossed in Game 1 after receiving multiple technical fouls. The two then watched the end of Monday’s Game 2 from the bench after fouling out. For his part, Durant committed nine turnovers while taking eight shots in the loss.
Talking about Beverley and the Clippers’ defense on Wednesday, Durant had some words for his ferocious opponent.
Durant’s trash talk game is much better than what we’ve seen from him on the court through the first two outings of the playoffs. That span has seen the two-time reigning NBA Finals MVP connect on 13 shots while turning the ball over 12 times.
Beverley and the Clippers might be playing “gimmicky” defense, but it seems to be getting in Durant’s head. It’s also working.
Whether that changes Game 3 in Los Angeles remains to be seen. Durant and the Warriors better hope so. If not, there’s a chance Los Angeles takes a 2-1 series lead.