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Kevin Durant to Warriors (Two years, $54.3M)

Discussion in 'NBA Dish' started by batkins, Jul 4, 2016.

  1. J.R.

    J.R. Contributing Member

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    <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-cards="hidden" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Larry Bird on Kevin Durant's decision: I 'couldn't imagine' joining Magic johnson: <a href="https://t.co/aTavIFEaP4">https://t.co/aTavIFEaP4</a> <a href="https://t.co/JWnT6INf0L">pic.twitter.com/JWnT6INf0L</a></p>&mdash; USA TODAY Sports (@USATODAYsports) <a href="https://twitter.com/USATODAYsports/status/751569078351982592">July 9, 2016</a></blockquote>
    <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

     
  2. Pipedream

    Pipedream Contributing Member

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    If Golden State trades for or drafts Durant, there is little or no backlash for creation of the super team, IMO.

    But the Celtics are a bad example to draw parallels to:

    Celtic's record the year before Bird was drafted: 29-53
    Bird = unquestioned best player on Celtics for the entirety of his career
    McHale = drafted
    Parish, Johnson = traded for

    The narrative is that Durant:
    1. Taking the easy road/shortcut to championship via free agency
    2. Destroying competitive balance by voluntarily joining one of the best teams in the history of the league
     
  3. Carl Herrera

    Carl Herrera Contributing Member

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    As noted in the article, Bird already had plenty of Hall of Famers and Allstars on his team: Parish, McHale, Dennis Johnson, Danny Ainge... He even had Bill Walton as a sixth-man one year.

    Also, until 1988, there was no such thing as unrestricted free agency. So, Bird was basically never in a position to move anywhere in the same manner that Durant had. Back then, a player who wanted to move had to force a trade.
     
  4. el gnomo

    el gnomo Member

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    Exactly. I wonder if there was unrestricted free agency, and Magic wanted to go to the Celtics, if Bird would've told him to GTFO.
     
  5. t_mac1

    t_mac1 Contributing Member

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    You're right that the narrative is moot if he becomes the clear-cut best player on the Warriors like Lebron did on the Heat.

    However, I don't see what Durant can do to be the clear cut best player on the Warriors. He had LESS MVP votes than WB last year and that was his teammate. And he's going to a team where Curry is a 2-time defending MVP who wants to re-deem his poor Finals performance.

    It's going to be tough for him to drive the narrative that he's the best player on the Warriors. Very tough.
     
  6. Chamillionaire

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    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/EooT6gFzOxA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    Kevin of Durant... LOL
     
  7. 08kx250f

    08kx250f Member

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    Anyone feel like the Warriors a lot this off season despite gaining KD?
     
  8. francis 4 prez

    francis 4 prez Contributing Member

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    i can't see it. the warriors were literally in the conversation for best team ever already. i can't think of any of those that then added an mvp in his prime. on paper, this is as stacked as it can be. to win 73 games requires such a level of talent that you already are historically stacked. you would basically need magic johnson to join the '86 celtics to get something comparable.
     
  9. heypartner

    heypartner Contributing Member

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    Bogut still holding his knee.
     
  10. francis 4 prez

    francis 4 prez Contributing Member

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    i think people overstate how quickly people forget. kobe is (rightly) held back by talk that he won 3 of his rings with shaq and that was 15 years ago. not many people give shaq much credit for 2006 because they remember dwade. rockets fans still hear "but jordan was retired" and that was 20 years ago. i don't hear many people give dr. j a ton of credit for winning a ring because that team took off when moses went there. history gets diluted, but things like championships are at least a little easier to remember (even if some of the memories might be fuzzy or more myth than fact). if kd is looking forward to how great his legacy will be then he might have to wait until people forget in 2050.



    this could happen for kd, but he's going to need steph to start falling off like dwade. it was only due to lebron so clearly carrying those teams in their title runs that lebron could escape the "joined up with superstars" narrative. because people saw wade not being himself any more. and bosh scoring 0 in a game 7 of the finals. if lebron was just cruising through the playoffs at 25/5/5 and got 4 straight easy rings, i think people still hate on the superteam aspect of it. but when he's throwing up 45/15/5 and 40/18/9, almost everyone had to begrudgingly accept that his greatness was making the team win.

    but steph isn't old. and even then, if he did fall off, draymond fits perfectly and isn't likely to not be considered great. klay and iggy are very good and likely to stay contributors. it's going to be hard for durant to stand out and be seen to be doing almost everything and unquestionably leading a team to a title like lebron. if durant's just putting up 25 ppg with his usual 8 rebounds and 4 or 5 assists, it'll be tough for him to get much credit, even if he might be slightly leading the team in scoring. and if the warriors are winning every series 4-0 or 4-1, it won't appear to have been much of an accomplishment almost no matter what kd is doing.
     
  11. francis 4 prez

    francis 4 prez Contributing Member

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    i have made the same argument many times. it's easy to say you wouldn't make a decision you never had the opportunity to make.

    but at the same time, that also doesn't imply that larry bird would definitely join magic johnson or vice versa. as it was, both team alternated their titles so neither one was seen to have a leg up on the other until magic's 1987 and 1988 wins gave him the lead for good. but if one had started with the advantage? if one had 3 titles by 1985 and had beaten the other in the finals all 3 times, do we really think bird or magic joins the other? i could see them asking for a trade to a different team, but to the team who is beating them and with whom they are battling for supremacy? i really can't see it. nothing about anything i've heard about larry bird or magic johnson makes me think they make that move.

    jordan joining the bad boys, isiah joining the celtics? i just don't see that in their personalities, especially mj. and i don't like mj or isiah so i'm not saying this to praise them. both essentially had about the same level of team success and frustration as durant before breaking through, in that they usually got knocked back by the top team in their conference.

    durant might be unique in having the choice, but i just don't see many people going to the team in their way. nba history has a million example of guys trying to get somewhere they could eventually overcome the team in their way (including lebron not going to boston, but going to miami to beat boston), but how many examples of teaming up with the team you were so close to usurping?
     
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  12. LIT123

    LIT123 Member

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    Bench doesn't mean much in playoffs, no b2b games, very short rotation. The GS bench wasn't much use this year in finals. GS will tbe ok bench wise with a few ring chasers. Heck, old man West was as good as anyone your rocks had starting, at least over the short haul. Injuries only factor and any team is screwed if that happens. Your chemistry point will be a bigger thing but If there is a problem I see Klay being odd man out and most likely to be moved for help, even if it is DG or one of the others is disgruntled party.
     
  13. francis 4 prez

    francis 4 prez Contributing Member

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    i could easily see a small minority of gsw fans not liking this move at all. and even quite a few who might be happy with the move but ultimately feel a little cheated.

    this is their team. their home-grown team. they drafted steph and klay and draymond. they watched them go from upstart and 6th seed to champion. they watched them set the league on fire, hitting crazy 3's, changing the way the game is played, breaking records. and now? there's just this mercenary joining the group.

    for one thing, he's not one of them. he's not part of "our team." in some ways, this now becomes about him. i realize the 95 rockets actually did change the team by trading for drexler once the season got off to a slow start, but could you imagine winning the '94 title and then in the offseason michael jordan comes out of retirement and joins the rockets? wait a minute, this was hakeem's team. played at UH, played here for 10 years. our home-grown superstar. and we watched him and these guys move up the ranks. and then we watched them bring a long awaited title to our city. and now? it's michael jordan's team. it's a michael jordan media circus. hey hakeem, could you move, you're in michael's shot. wait, we just got to the mountaintop with this team. the peak is all the greater for the journey. and now it's something else completely.


    and unlike the '94 rockets, this warriors teams has unfinished business. they just got through telling the world how much better they were than everybody. how much better steph curry was than everybody. their shorter, moderately athletic star who went from underdog to king of the world. he took over the league. he did things no one has ever done. and with a consistency and volume that made it special. and then they and he got punked in the finals. historic collapse. historically bad individual performance for an mvp. but hey, they could get their revenge next year. show everyone that those 73 wins meant something. that steph curry was really just hurt and he deserved every vote of that unanimous mvp and that historic seasons were going to be the norm for him.

    and now? the disappointment is locked in. how are you going to show everyone that 73 meant something if you signed an mvp to come help you. how is steph curry going to get lebron back when we now know he had to call his mvp friend to come help get the job done. kd means that the narrative has been written for "that" team. nice team, won a title, but were there for just 2 years and ultimately failed to live up to their biggest hype.

    so i can see having mixed emotions about it even if that doesn't mean you won't still mostly enjoy the parades.
     
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  14. mac2yao

    mac2yao Member

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    Hmm? I never hear anyone denigrate Erving or his title because Moses Malone jumpstarted the team. In fact, I'd be extremely surprised if more than 1% of current basketball fans even knew anything about that.

    I also don't hear much about "Tragic Johnson" these days and I sincerely doubt very many people remember anything about that.

    I agree that issues of "who so-and-so played with" don't disappear. People with a bone to pick with Jordan will note he never won anything without Pippen, Pippen obviously lives in the shadow of Jordan. The Bill Russell vs. Wilt Chamberlain arguments always feature people saying that Russell was surrounded by much better rosters, etc.

    So I agree that people will note that Durant won his titles, if the Warriors win titles, with an amazing supporting cast. I just don't think that will matter much, since Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, etc, really aren't dinged historically for being on stacked teams.

    What I was saying will fade with time are these current debates about whether Durant is a coward, whether he's a "beta," whether he quit on the Thunder, etc. Basically, the emotional morality play aspect of it (judging players' character by their success on court--choker, not a leader, etc--or by the free agency choices they make). Drama fuels argument among hardcore fans for a while, but once new dramas take over, the old ones fade.

    What endures? Stats and championships, mostly. Stats without championships win some admiration (Charles Barkley and Karl Malone will always be basketball immortals for their production) and championships without stats can get you some admiration as an intangibles leader. But if you put up great stats and win several championships, you go into the exclusive club at the top. Off the top of my head, I can't think of any player who posted a great statistical career, won multiple titles and isn't considered one of the pinnacle players. I don't think Durant will be any different if he continues performing at an elite level and the Warriors win a few championships.
     
  15. Icehouse

    Icehouse Contributing Member

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    And the playoffs clearly showed that was a convo that should have never occurred, for the GS team or Curry.
     
  16. iconoclastic

    iconoclastic Member

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    Name one team in the conversation for best team ever whose best player suffered an injury in the middle of the playoffs.
     
  17. el gnomo

    el gnomo Member

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    ^spoiler'd for length.

    1. As far as signing KD, it basically came down to a swap for Harrison Barnes + a few mil. A lot of the same guys they lost were probably gone anyways. (see tweets below)

    2. LOL if you wouldn't want to pair Michael Effing Jordan with Hakeem. That's one of the more ridiculous posts I've ever seen here, and that's saying something. Obviously, it's not possible at this point, so it's very easy for you to say. You're doing some Olympic level mental gymnastics ITT.

    <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Warriors' bench was going to be shaken up. No matter how the season turned out, even if Durant didn't come. And the bench need a makeover #</p>&mdash; Marcus Thompson (@ThompsonScribe) <a href="https://twitter.com/ThompsonScribe/status/751466789779873792">July 8, 2016</a></blockquote>
    <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

    <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Warriors fans should realize, with all the money out there, they could have lost 5 of their 9 free agents anyway even if they didn't get KD</p>&mdash; Marcus Thompson (@ThompsonScribe) <a href="https://twitter.com/ThompsonScribe/status/751497486783492097">July 8, 2016</a></blockquote>
    <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>
     
  18. Rox11

    Rox11 Member

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    Kevin Durcant
     
  19. Easy

    Easy Very Calm
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    Of course, all these are possible.

    But honestly, which is more probable:
    (1) Durant becoming the lead dog in GS? Or
    (2) Durant being the lead dog in OKC or another team as a title contender throughout his prime?

    I think most people would say #2 is a lot more probable.

    The only scenario that people's opinion of him as a weak guy will change is the bolded part of what you said above. I'd say if he played great on OKC or on another contending team through his prime, even if he could not win a single title (due to the greatness GSW and LeBron) his legacy would be better than winning as a second fiddle on a stacked team.

    Again, legacy is by definition how people think about you. And people's opinion has a lot to do with context. It is not just about winning championships. It about HOW you win.
     
  20. Major

    Major Member

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    This just seems like a failure of imagination on your part. You really can't see how Durant might be the best player on the team? What if Curry tears up his knee, misses the season and is never the same? And Durant wins 3 titles as the #1 guy on that team?

    This is the problem with trying to write narratives before they happen - reality almost never works out the way it does in your head beforehand. Trying to predict is just silly.
     

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