Durant managed to score 28 points as the Oklahoma City Thunder suffered a 122-105 defeat, but Popovich declared himself happy with the work done by his players after the MVP was restricted to just one successful shot in the final quarter.
"You're obviously not going to stop him, but making him work hard is certainly the plan," the Spurs coach told reporters. "It's everybody's plan, no matter who he plays against, they're going to make him work hard.
"I thought Kawhi [Leonard] was good, didn't foul, but I think the team did a nice job behind him, helping him."
Game two of the series takes place on Wednesday night.