Kevin Durant's Manager Responds to Draymond Green's Comments About Warriors ExitMay 13, 2020
Rich Kleiman, the agent for Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant, said Monday he disagrees with Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green suggesting KD should have given the organization a heads up about his plans to leave in free agency after the 2018-19 season.
Green appeared on UNINTERRUPTED's WRTS: After Party YouTube show (h/t ESPN's Nick Friedell) in April to discuss "The Last Dance," the ongoing Netflix documentary about Michael Jordan and the 1990s Chicago Bulls. He wished the star-studded Dubs could have enjoyed a similar final season together, acknowledging that Durant having one year left on his contract made things more difficult:
"That was kind of the elephant in the room, and although Steve would kind of hit on it, [saying], 'Let's just enjoy this year for what it is because we don't know what next year holds,' it didn't necessarily carry the same weight because what should have happened was Kevin come out and say, 'Hey, man, this is it, so let's do this,' or, 'This isn't it.'"
Kleiman explained on The Athletic's Tampering podcast (via Josh Schrock of NBC Sports Bay Area) the situation wasn't so simple to navigate.
While the Bulls knew head coach Phil Jackson was leaving after the 1997-98 season, and that Jordan would likely follow him out the door, Durant didn't know for sure he'd be leaving Golden State.
"Kevin and I haven't spoken about [Draymond's comments] since that day. I don't necessarily agree with the [notion that] 'He should have let us know' because nothing is as black and white as that. It's like you're damned if you do, damned if you don't. He didn't know at certain times. You go back and forth on how you feel. Everybody does, like, throughout the course of a season. You gonna make a declaration on something when you really don't know how you're going to feel, you don't know anything. Look what happened to him in the Finals. No one knows any of it.
"So just think about how that would have played into effect. Imagine if people said 'Earlier in the year, Kevin said he's not coming back' and the way they would have been talking about it. All of that, when you really break it down, made no sense. And he really didn't know."
Durant finished his three-year run with the Warriors with a pair of championships, two NBA Finals MVP Awards and a trio of All-Star selections.
He joined the Nets on a four-year, $164.3 million contract but has yet to appear in a game for Brooklyn while recovering from a ruptured Achilles suffered in last year's Finals.
Kleiman explained on Tampering his client is happy with how everything played out in Golden State, per Ali Thanawalla of NBC Sports Bay Area.
"He has never regretted decisions," he said. "He feels like his experience in the Bay was incredible. He went to three Finals, won two Finals MVPs, formed an incredible set of relationships for life there. Has incredible friends there. So that situation was awesome."
Meanwhile, it's no guarantee the Warriors' dynasty is over because Durant decided to leave. They still have Thompson, Green and Stephen Curry. They acquired Andrew Wiggins in a trade with the Minnesota Timberwolves and should land one of the top picks in the 2020 NBA draft.
So just because Golden State hasn't had a "last dance" yet doesn't mean it won't happen at all.