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Golden State Warriors

An anonymous NBA scout previews the Warriors for the 2017-16 season.

"There’s no way they beat 73 wins. They don’t want to go through that again and there will be growing pains. Maybe they can make another run at history next year once they’ve jelled. … I’ll take Golden State over Cleveland in seven. Durant’s arrival should swing that series. How does Cleveland guard both Curry and Durant? … They lost a ton of supporting players who had really clear roles: Barnes, Bogut, Ezeli and Barbosa. There will be a cumulative effect from those losses, especially early. … Their closing lineup will be scary good, but Kerr has some work to do building out his rotations. … They took a big step back at center. Bogut is an elite defender and rim-protector and Ezeli was proven. Zaza and Varejao just aren’t on that level. They’ll miss Bogut more than anyone else. If Bogut was a 10 for rim-protection, Zaza is a three. … Steph will still be the alpha guy for them because the ball will be in his hands but he will score less this year.  … Distribution of shots will be a major issue no matter what they say. … There’s some pressure on Steph to make Durant feel like he’s still their go-to scorer. … Durant is the toughest scorer in the league to guard, much tougher than Carmelo now, and his shot-making is unbelievable when he’s in takeover mode. He’s also the biggest ball-stopper on their team. Look for Kerr to give him an isolation package to keep him happy. Durant going one-on-one is a great hammer coming out of timeouts or when they need a bucket late. He draws so much attention. … Durant has good feet, not great feet defensively, and he tries to get away with his length. Overall, though, he’s underrated defensively. … Kerr is smart enough to stagger Curry and Durant so that one is always on the court. Scary thought. … Curry is only an average defender but at least he has a high IQ and you can’t attack him every single possession like you could when he was younger. He’s still not that strong and he can be posted up. Thompson and Iguodala save him a lot. … Draymond is a top 15 player. They’ve done an amazing job developing him, and they really have to hope his offseason incidents were part of a learning curve rather than signs of bad habits. … Draymond is the only guy who can protect the rim for them right now. He better not get hurt. … Their small lineup got pounded on the glass in the playoffs, even when Draymond was out there. That’s an Achilles heel. … Iguodala hasn’t slipped yet and Livingston is one of the best bench guards in the league. Both excel at playing off of other players. … I don’t see West playing a huge role for them. He’s a better fit for their style if he plays the five. … I’m intrigued by McCaw. He’s going to open some eyes with his skill and athleticism. He’s got the talent and he’s a good fit."

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