Golden State Warriors Eyeing Kevin Durant; Will Be the Warriors’ Top Priority
Much to no one’s surprise, teams are lining up for a shot at landing Kevin Durant, who is an unrestricted free agent this offseason. The hottest free agent since LeBron James has his pick of the lot of where he wants to go — or possibly stay in Oklahoma City.
He has stated in the past that he loves where he is and he would like to be one of those players who manages to play out his entire career on the same team. In this day and age of the NBA, however, it’s hard to imagine that. Kobe Bryant and Tim Duncan may be the last of their kind as the “new NBA” is all about teaming up with other stars to create “super teams” in order to stack the deck in your favor.
Fresh off a monumental collapse in the NBA Finals, the greatest regular season team in NBA history is now licking their wounds and trying to figure out how to get better. Naturally, the best free agent on the market is the prime target on their radar. The Warriors and Spurs, who landed LeMarcus Aldridge last offseason, are considered the top two targets to threaten OKC’s ability to retain their biggest star.
Durant has his own short list of teams he would choose and has allowed a select few to schedule a face to face to make their pitch and the Warriors and Spurs are both on that list.
Is It Even Possible?
More than likely, Harrison Barnes will be a cap casualty for the Warriors as he is expected to command more on the open market than Golden State could offer him. Festus Ezeli is also an unrestricted free agent who could be lured away. He was a solid bench contributor until center Andrew Bogut injured his knee and was forced out of the series, which propelled Ezeli into the starting lineup.
The Warriors’ penchant for matchups with Draymond Green playing the center position in their small lineup cut into Ezeli’s playing time and he was marginally effective while he was in. Both players seem to excel in secondary roles, but there is no doubt that someone will overpay to bring them aboard and hope they turn out to be stars who were undervalued as opposed to the opposite.
James Harden turned out to be the best 6th man turned superstar, but there’s certainly a gamble hoping Barnes can make that leap.
With the inevitable few players coming off the Warriors’ books, they will have the money to pursue Mr. Durant. The thought of two of the last three league MVPs on the same team is a tantalizing one and something that surely would keep King James up at night. It all depends on Durant’s own personal feelings and whether he’d rather win a championship on his own terms or simply do whatever it takes to win.
It would be an “if you can’t beat ’em join ’em” scenario if he went to the Warriors, after their epic Western Conference Finals showdown, but that would be quite a show to see.
(Golden State Warriors Eyeing Kevin Durant)