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Tuesday, December 10th, 2013 at 11:15 am  |  23 responses

Paul George Calls Kevin Durant the NBA’s Toughest Cover


LeBron James and the Miami Heat invade Indy tonight for a highly-anticipated showdown with the Pacers. According to Paul George, Kevin Durant (and not LBJ) is the hardest player in the League to guard. From the team website: “Previously, Pacers swingman Paul George has said that Carmelo Anthony of the New York Knicks is the toughest player in the Association for him to defend. ‘Pick your poison,’ he said last season of guarding Anthony. Following the Pacers’ 118-94 loss in Oklahoma City (on Sunday night), George told reporters that Durant is his toughest cover in the league. ‘It is,’ he said. ‘It is a tougher matchup. I watch their games, I watch a lot of NBA games. And offensively, KD is most of the times he’s scoring in bunches off of iso plays and one-on-one plays. And when they play against us, he’s moving a lot. He’s the screener, he’s getting back-screened and he’s coming off pin-downs and it’s a little different when I’m guarding him and it makes it a tougher cover.’ Durant finished with a game-high 36 points on 14-of-23 shooting. Pacers coach Frank Vogel firmly believes that George is the best wing defender in the game and the Thunder frequently sending screens to help Durant, the NBA’s leading scorer, helps demonstrate how tough it is to score on George alone.”

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  • Jer dawg

    If a guy never stops moving and scores 20 points just in flow and you can’t square him up on Defense then yes he’s very much a tough cover. With Melo he isolates you and you can contest jump shots and post ups with length and athleticism then it’s easy. George is good enough on ISO defense. Durant moves and moves. Bumping off people every time on defense is annoying. I can see why he would say Durant is tough cover.

  • 2chainz
  • Metrobus

    Exactly my thoughts! He did sh*t when it mattered most, so…

  • http://soundcloud.com/tray-8 T-Ray

    LeBron sure was abusing that ass in the ECF especially Game 3.

  • LakeShow

    Very true.

    Some people will think LeBron because he can facilitate better while still scoring more efficiently, but KD’s scoring prowess is unmatched.

    LeBron can still be taken out of his game by guarding him 1 on 1 with an excellent defender, and by giving him plenty of room from 16 feet extended, and keeping defenders in the corners.

    KD for the most part can’t be stopped from scoring.

    Plus PG probably doesn’t count when LeBron passes and a player scores as bad defense by himself as much as when LeBron scores on him individually. Which doesn’t happen as often as it does with KD.

    It depends on how you look at it, but I agree with PG.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Paul George has never proven able to throw off either of Durant or James. But Durant MURDERS Paul George. So i guess saying he’s “tougher” makes sense…

    Durant vs George –> http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/h2h_finder.cgi?request=1&p1=duranke01&p2=georgpa01

    James vs George –> http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/h2h_finder.cgi?request=1&p1=georgpa01&p2=jamesle01

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    awesome that my comment disappeared reappeared.

  • shockexchange

    Paul George forgets that The Kang is armed with the Shock Exchange’s “LeBron Rules … Keys to Stopping LeBron James”. That is all.

  • Dagger

    The Lebron/George playoffs comparison is maybe even more revealing than the regular season comparison. But it’ll be interesting to see how these numbers evolve over the next few years.

  • The Mauve Avenger
  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    yeah, James just overpowered George in the playoffs. George really can’t do much to hamper either guy, but if the concept of “tough cover” revolves around scoring, I understand the argument for Durant.

  • bike

    I don’t think it’s a stretch to say KD is the best scorer in the league right now. PG does a good job describing what he means by a tough cover so no problem with what he is saying.

  • 2chainz

    but keep in mind that Paul George has to do a lot on the offensive end also, so trying to defend Lebron and Durant for 48 mins is not an easy task.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    it’s an impossible task no matter how much energy a guy has lol that’s why i think this is kind of dumb. team defense is the only thing that will affect either of those guys.

  • thebossman15

    lol why did they have to put lebron of all people in brackets smh. Countless people have mentioned players other than lebron being the hardest to guard but of course its either “they dont know what they are talking about” or some other lame excuse.

  • Me that’s who

    Carmelo may score off iso’s but he still a top three scorer in the league who bullies people in the post and plays no defense so you get his best shot each time down the offensive end I wouldn’t classify him a easy cover. Fact is PG can’t guard him KD or Lebron, he just have to hope they off.

  • Dagger

    Maybe because he’s a former scoring champ who’s shooting 60% from the field and just won 4 of the last 5 MVPs? Crazy, I know!

  • thebossman15

    So you just refuse to sound logical?. Kobe is a 2 time scoring champ and melo is the most recent scoring champ..both are guys who have been said by fellow nba players(moreso kobe) to be a harder matchup, but why couldnt they garner their name in brackets?? and since when do mvp awards have anything to do with the ability to score..the award goes to the team with the best record’s best player and has nothing to do with your ability to score, in that case steve nash must be in this debate lol.

    60% from the field would be very impressive if he actually played like a guard..hes been playing like a power forward and steps outside of the paint/block as often as korver steps inside the 3. Nice try though

  • TTN

    PG is not that like that on defense, Tony Allen, Avery bradley are because that’s all they have to do to earn their keep. PG is slightly above average in that category because of his length and willingness to try play D but he has to try to score to nowadays but when it comes to the top scorers Kobe, Lebron, KD, Melo in the league ain’t nothing he can do but hope for the best any they are in the top 5 every year for a reason they can only stop themselves.

  • COYNE

    You’d rather guard LeBron than KD sure, but who would you rather have guarding you? Easy… LeBron is the complete two way player.
    (i am a Celtics fan who really dislike LeBron, but you’ve got to acknowledge these things)

  • jessedogg

    You talk as If having a 60% FG percentage or scoring more points around the ring isn’t an NBA players choice. If anyone could do it.. anyone would do it.

  • thebossman15

    no..hes in the perfect position to be shooting a 60% field goal percentage..dont get me wrong he is a superstar in this league but he plays on a team where there are so many threats it gives him the ability to choose when he scores against inferior competition in the eastern conference. You think other guys wouldn’t be able to shoot that high a percentage if they were in his position?(remains to be seen obviously, but so does a team constructed like the heat)

    I look at that type of thing in perspective,..besides its not like he shoots anywhere near that clip against the really good teams like we saw last night lol..dude went m.i.a second half airballing big shots, missing key free throws, turning the ball over at inopportune times. etc etc..all in perspective

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