Golden State Warriors small forward Kevin Durant and his impending free agency has been one of the hottest topics in the league in the past months. No matter what the outcome of the 2018-19 NBA season will be, rumors and speculations suggested that Durant will be leaving the Warriors to face the next biggest challenge of his NBA career. Some people are definitely wondering why Durant would consider parting ways with the Warriors next summer.
The Warriors almost have everything incoming free agents are looking from a team – incredible coaching staffs, All-Star caliber teammates, and the chance to win multiple NBA championship titles. However, according to Steve Popper of Newsday, there is something that Kevin Durant wants that he can never get if he stays in Golden State which is to become the centerpiece of the team.
“But one front office executive said that Durant has been unhappy with the prodding from Steve Kerr and the feeling that he never can be — no matter how great he performs and how many individual honors he compiles — the centerpiece of a team that holds Steph Curry in the hearts of the franchise. In New York, where no stars reside right now, Durant would certainly be the star attraction as well as the player who picks his teammates.”
— The Athletic (@TheAthleticSF) May 19, 2019
Kevin Durant is in no doubt one of the major reasons behind the Warriors’ success in the past three years. The Warriors were already a dangerous team before Durant arrived in the summer of 2016, but his acquisition made them almost invincible even if several title contenders tried to build a superteam of their own. Unfortunately, no matter what he does, Durant will never replace Stephen Curry as the face of the franchise.
As of now, the only way Kevin Durant can get what his heart desires is by leaving the Warriors in the 2019 NBA free agency and start a new journey somewhere else. As of now, the New York Knicks emerged as his top landing spot next summer. Months before free agency starts, rumors have circulated that Durant and the Knicks held a “secret meeting” and had a “handshake deal” in place.
The Knicks may have finished the 2018-19 NBA with one of the worst records in the league, but they have the capability to surround Kevin Durant with quality players next summer. After giving Durant a max contract, the Knicks will still have enough salary cap space to chase the likes of Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Leonard, Jimmy Butler, and Kemba Walker in the 2019 NBA free agency. The Knicks also have a plethora of trade assets to engage in a blockbuster deal where one of their top targets include Anthony Davis of the New Orleans.