Kevin Durant has a chance to chase history with Golden State

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Updated: July 4, 2016
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It’s official. Kevin Durant has agreed to sign with the Golden State Warriors. Rumors were circulating a few hours prior to the decision becoming public that it was indeed his intent. He leaves the Oklahoma City Thunder in a very rough spot, but in the back of everyone’s mind, there was always a concern that Russell Westbrook might leave once he becomes a free agent next season.

It wasn’t an easy decision for Durant, but it all makes sense when you take a deeper look. In an interview with The Oklahoman’s Anthony Anthony Slater, Durant made the following statement:

“I’m worried about basketball. That’s what it is for me. It’s a basketball decision. I’m looking forward to the future.”

Social media absolutely exploded when he made his announcement via The Players’ Tribune on Independence Day. In his story, “The Next Chapter,” Durant stated:

“It really pains me to know that I will disappoint so many people with this choice, but I believe I am doing what I feel is the right thing at this point in my life and my playing career.”

Whether it’s the right decision in your mind or not, at the end of the day, it was ultimately up to Durant. Most of the uproar came when fans started comparing Durant’s choice to “The Decision” by LeBron James back in 2010. But there isn’t much of a difference. Both players based their decision off what they felt made the most since for their individual careers. 

It’s simple. Durant wants to win. Approaching his 10th season in the NBA, Durant still hasn’t won a ring in Oklahoma City. They’ve reached the Finals just one time, in the 2011-12 season, where they lost in five games to James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and the Miami Heat. This past season, the Thunder came just one victory shy of another NBA Finals appearance, leading the Warriors 3-1, and blowing three consecutive games to lose in the Western Conference finals.
Maybe that’s what leaves such a bitter taste in everyone’s mouth. He ends up joining forces with the team that just eliminated him a few months ago.

In Golden State, there’s a chance for history to be made once again. But, in a variety of ways. First, they probably have the best roster of any team in NBA history. The fact they have back-to-back MVP Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, which is already a quality Big 3. Then you add the former MVP and four-time scoring champion in Durant, and all of a sudden there is talk of an 82-0 season.

That’s what made this decision so tough for Durant — turning down the chance of making history. The fact that this team is still young, means they can win multiple championships for years to come.

This is the new age of the NBA. With the salary cap steadily growing, more teams are capable of pulling off these kinds of deals. Role players are getting starters’ money, starter’s are getting star money, and stars are going to join other stars to form “super teams.”

One takeaway from all of these shenanigans: You can’t criticize a player for not winning a championship, then turn around and condemn him once he takes an alternative route to earn one. That’s a double-standard at its finest. But with Durant now in the Bay Area, and his team heavily favored to win, it’ll be intriguing to see how this all unfolds once the 2016-17 season is off and running.

DC Hendrix

DC Hendrix

Report for Sideline Sports Report. Producer/Host for ESPN 1380 in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

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