RUMOR: Warriors planned to make long-term pitch to Kevin Durant, could’ve traded him if he wanted out of deal
The Golden State Warriors were not kidding when they said they’d plan to keep this core together, planning to pitch Kevin Durant into staying with the framework of a long-term deal, according to Frank Isola of The Athletic.
Durant recently suffered a likely season-ending Achilles injury upon returning for Game 5 of the NBA Finals, but prior to it, the Warriors had planned to convince him to stay.
“Durant’s state of mind is anyone’s guess. He may be upset with the Warriors medical staff and front office and could decide to bolt. The other two options would be to opt into his contract for one more season or take the financial security and sign a five-year extension with Golden State. According to a source, the Warriors were going to pitch Durant on signing long term, with the understanding that if he wanted to leave at any point during his contract the team would grant him that wish. That could still be in the works even with Durant likely to sit out most if not all of next season.”
It’s unknown if the Warriors will want to risk a long-term proposition with such a significant injury, but it wouldn’t be out of the cards for them to offer their prized cog another one-year deal to remain with the team, much like they did with DeMarcus Cousins — though it’s unlikely Durant would want to sign the $5.3 million mid-level exception at this point in his career,
The New York Knicks, the Brooklyn Nets and the L.A. Clippers are reportedly willing to take the risk and sign him to a full-fledged four-year, $141 million deal even with this injury, which should bode as stiff competition for a dynasty that has seen its challenges throughout the course of this season,