Kevin Durant shocked the world when he signed with the Golden State Warriors and decided to leave the Oklahoma City Thunder. According to the latest NBA rumors, Durant reportedly knew that Russell Westbrook is not going to sign a contract extension and it contributed to his decision.
The Thunder put in a valiant effort to persuade Durant to stay as Sam Presti traded Serge Ibaka in exchange for Victor Oladipo, Ersan Ilyasova and Domantas Sabonis on draft night. It was a move that was specifically made to counter the Warriors but it was not enough.
According to Marcus Thompson of the Bay Area News Group, Durant’s decision to leave Oklahoma City was affected by the uncertainty of Westbrook’s own plans. Russell is set to become a free agent after the 2016-17 season and he reportedly has no intentions to sign an extension even if Durant stayed with OKC.
The pitch of the Warriors front office and players was enough to convince KD to join the best regular season team in NBA history. Durant’s decision was based on the chances of winning an NBA title and playing alongside Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and Andre Iguodala gives him that.
If he had stayed in Oklahoma City, they will likely fall to the Warriors again with Westbrook possibly leaving him. It would have been another wasted year for Durant, instead, he made the decision to win now.
Zach Harper of CBS Sports added that Durant and Westbrook really had chemistry issues. Their 3-1 collapse was the final blow to their partnership. The two players now head into the 2016-17 season in different directions.
Durant will be focused on breaking more records and winning an NBA championship with the Warriors. On the other hand, Westbrook will likely get traded this offseason or at the deadline because the Thunder do not want to lose another superstar for nothing.
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