OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) – Kevin Durant decided his best chance for “growth” means leaving his beloved Oklahoma City behind for a big move out West to join the star-studded, record-setting Golden State Warriors and play alongside Splash Brothers Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.
In the most anticipated move of the NBA offseason, Durant announced his decision Monday on The Players’ Tribune. His contract is for $54 million over two years and includes a player option, a person with knowledge of the deal said Monday, speaking on condition of anonymity because details weren’t made public. Durant’s move will become official as soon as Thursday, when free agents can sign their new contracts.
Independence Day, indeed.
“The primary mandate I had for myself in making this decision was to have it based on the potential for my growth as a player – as that has always steered me in the right direction,” Durant said in the article.
“But I am also at a point in my life where it is of equal importance to find an opportunity that encourages my evolution as a man: moving out of my comfort zone to a new city and community which offers the greatest potential for my contribution and personal growth. With this in mind, I have decided that I am going to join the Golden State Warriors.”
And the 2015 champion Warriors, who squandered a 3-1 NBA Finals lead to lose to LeBron James and the Cavaliers last month, know how tough Durant is in any lineup: They rallied from down 3-1 to beat Durant and the Thunder in a seven-game Western Conference Finals.
Golden State applied a full-court press to land Durant. On Friday in the Hamptons, the Warriors sent owner Joe Lacob, general manager Bob Myers, coach of the year Steve Kerr, Curry and Thompson to meet with the 6-foot-9 superstar.