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The Rockets have no answer for Kevin Durant, and that’s a problem

Golden State Warriors v Houston Rockets - Game One Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The Warriors stole home-court advantage in Game 1 with a 119-106 win over the Rockets on Monday night, and even though James Harden went off for a game-high 41 points, it was Kevin Durant who was the difference for the both teams.

Durant is a scoring savage, a bucket bandit, a points per possession problem. He may not have won a scoring title since 2014, but you can’t forget: He’s got four of them under his belt. Durant can get a basket in any way, shape or form from anywhere on the court. The Warriors leaned on him early and often in Game 1. He did not fold beneath the pressure.

Durant dominated the Rockets in the first half

He scored 17 points on 8-of-12 shooting in the first two quarters alone. Some of his baskets just looked straight up foolish.

Chris Paul probably thought he had at least a fraction of a chance at checking Durant by being physical out at the three-point line. But when Durant hit him with a spin move and rose up for a fadeaway from inside the paint, that was all she wrote.

How did Durant throw this dunk down? I have no idea:

If you thought LeBron James was the only one draining fadeaways, you thought wrong. Durant is just as good, if not better, at draining those baskets. He might make it look easier, too.

And of course, he hits his open shots. He has to — a knockdown shooter, he doesn’t get too many wide open looks, especially not with a playoff game hanging in the balance.

Durant continued his onslaught in the third quarter

He tallied 13 points on 5-of-11 shooting in that period alone. Durant’s presence helped the Warriors pull away by 13 with 2:23 left in the third — a lead they held through most of the fourth, too.

Durant finished with 37 points on 14-of-27 shooting. Twenty-seven of those 37 possessions came on isolation possessions. He shot 77 percent on those ISO’s, according to ESPN Stats and Info. That just doesn’t make any sense.

And the Rockets don’t have any answers

They tried James Harden. That didn’t work out so well.

They tried P.J. Tucker, so Durant slowed down time.

Clint Capela didn’t stand a chance when he was forced to switch onto Durant:

And as you saw earlier, Chris Paul didn’t stand a chance checking a 7’ shooting guard.

The answer is simple, and Durant knows it: No one can guard him. Not Trevor Ariza, not Luc Mbah a Moute, not P.J. Tucker, and certainly not Paul. Steve Kerr said it best: Durant is the ultimate luxury. He’s a guy you can give the ball in any situation, and he can get whatever shot he wants, whenever he wants it.

“Kevin is the ultimate luxury because a play can break down and you just throw him the ball and he can get you a bucket as well as anybody on Earth,” Kerr said. “Kevin, this is why anybody would want him on their team. But you think about a couple years ago, and we’re in the Finals and we couldn’t quite get over the hump. Kevin’s the guy who puts you over the hump.

“I don’t know what you do to guard him. He can get any shot he wants.”

There’s no answer, and that’s the scariest part for Houston. Hell, it’s the scariest part for any team. The only thing scarier than that?

Durant knows it.