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Kevin Durant staying could push Draymond Green out the door

Kevin Durant, Draymond Green, Warriors

The era of dominance by the Golden State Warriors has proven to be the NBA’s No. 1 public enemy, as many teams have emptied notebooks and wallets in hopes to dethrone the two-time defending champions and avoid a three-peat from taking place at the end of the 2018-19 season.

A core of now five All-Stars seems indestructible, at least until the cost proves too much to bear for this Warriors ownership, which is already elbows deep in the luxury tax. While most are narrating the ways Durant could leave Golden State, he is immediately better served by cashing in on his opportunity to win titles and advance his legacy after nine titleless years in Seattle/Oklahoma City.

Durant is bound to command max money, and rightfully so, whether he is signing on long- or short-term deals.

According to Andrew Sharp of Sports Illustrated, Draymond Green could be the one piece that could make this behemoth finally crumble down.

“Back in June, ESPN’s Chris Haynes reported that Draymond is not expected to take a discount on his next contract. He’ll be a free agent in the summer of 2020—two seasons from now—and he’s going to get paid,” wrote Sharp. “For now, Green is making $17 million per year, which is $7 million less than Steven Adams and $12 million less than Al Horford.”

“If he wins Defensive Player of the Year next season—a realistic goal—he’ll be eligible for a $226 million supermax extension next summer. Even if an offer in that range never materializes, he’s headed for a significant and well-deserved raise. Does it make sense for the Warriors to be the team that gives it to him?”

Green has been known as the heart and soul of this Warriors team for his incredible motor and dynamic playmaking ability, yet he remains an inefficient scoring option and a liability at the 3-point line, a shot he has been hellbent on taking despite his constant woes from long-range — resulting in a 30.1 percent mark from deep this past season.

Klay Thompson seems to be committed to be a lifetime Warrior and may be willing to take a pay cut to keep winning, but Green feels he has already given up his share of money as he enters the prime of his career — something that could start the eventual divorce between the Saginaw native and the organization.