KD’s comments & Russ’s reaction… is this going to be a season long thing?
I would be shocked if it wasn’t an ongoing story throughout the season. And to be candid, this just creates a much more entertaining environment. We watch hoops for how great these teams are, but also for the story that shapes who these people are. And for Kevin Durant in the Bay area and Russell Westbrook in Oklahoma City, the tension doesn’t cut any closer than this, even if the games won’t.
The media will drag this storyline for as long as they can. As long as KD is a Warrior and Westbrook is on the Thunder, the “feud” isn’t going anywhere. While I feel the “feud” is more hype than anything, Westbrook’s latest reaction seems to show he really is bothered by recent comments from the newest Warrior. It’s natural, whether they enjoyed each other or not, that bolting to an enemy would create tension. Most of it is manufactured, but something is there. The hype these regular season matchups garner will be insane, and imagining a playoff series between the two gets everyone — the league and TNT especially — excited.
Russ is already a unique, weird type of fella. In a good way. I wouldn’t expect him to be anything but entertaining about KD’s departure. None of us knows about their relationship, and who really cares. Russ said he was done commenting, so hopefully it goes away so we can focus on the games instead of the drama. If people keep talking or unnamed sources leak stories, it will never go away. The media and sports fans love drama, so people would eat that up whether it’s tomorrow, next week or 10 years from now. They could make a “30 for 30” on the KD/Russ dynamic and viewers would eat it up. So yes, it could be a season long thing. I just won’t be paying attention to it if it is.
Yup. Media loves a story. We saw cable news launch Trumps career purely for ratings avoiding to actually do there jobs properly. Oh wait, wrong blog. Back to KD. Durant was presented like he was Oklahoma’s Tim Duncan to fans for nearly a decade. Whether he was like that or it was OKC media spin, we don’t know. But we do know everything Durant or Russ comment it leads Sportscenter, gets click etc. And we’re as guilty of it as anyone. Anytime there’s a quote it riles up Warrior fans same way it does all other NBA fans. It creates conversations. So I don’t anticipate it going away any time soon.
How fed up do you think KD and the Warriors are of other players around the league taking shots at his decision?
Draymond is, isn’t he? I think the team knew what it was in for when they got together and recruited Durant in the meeting at the Hamptons. It’d be foolish to expect nothing less than the backlash they have received. Given that, it doesn’t appear this team will go out and try to stop all criticism by winning 74 games (like the way they went about last season in response to their “fluky” title). They know how long the season is, when to pace themselves, and the goal this time around might be how many games it will take them to win 16 games in the postseason.
Draymond Green put it perfectly: nobody cares what you think about KD’s decision. Whether your name Jae Crowder, Enes Kanter or Paul Pierce, KD and the Warriors couldn’t care less. Make your money, worry about your own team and move on. The league is a business, and KD made the best decision for his own life and the lives of everyone around him. His not-so-subtle shots at his old team are great for headlines, but reveal the reality of his move: he wanted to enjoy life more than he was. The Warriors saw this years ago and pounced at the opportunity to lure him away. As Joe Lacob said, “sorry we got him.” The Warriors will let their play do the talking.
My guess is they are less fed up and more annoyed. They probably even like people talking shit so they can use it as extra motivation. Similar to how Drake and every other rapper wants Meek Mill to come at them so they can fire back and destroy him. It’s an easy win. The Warriors want the shots fired at them so they can shut everyone up. Victory is that much sweeter when everyone is against you.
They’re probably annoyed. They knew it was coming but knowing it’d come and seeing it daily and feeling it in opposing arenas are different things. I expect it to fuel them all year but Kerr needs to be careful it doesn’t fatigue them in the way the chase for 73 might have. It could go either way but I suspect it’ll bring the team closer together over the season. Create an us v. the world attitude. An attitude many of the players already have.
Draymond responds to Paul Pierce and defends KD, your thoughts on what Draymond had to say.
Beyond the Well Actually crowd that is claiming we don’t pay attention to CEOs, or Apple-Google contracts, and how much this isn’t a business atmosphere, Draymond’s larger point on the freedom of what a player should get is significant. The amount of “Kevin Durant should stop talking” is a fundamental problem, especially for a minority athlete in today’s America. For those that think it’s a weak move, this portends more to that fan’s projection of how they think titles, or larger goals, should be achieved. No one willingly wants to take the easiest route towards a promotion, why would you project what you can or cannot do to an athlete that is so much better at this profession than yourself? Mostly, fan reaction reeks of jealousy and hate. But man, is it entertaining.
Same. There were rumors of Pierce retiring this summer, but if you re-sign with the Clippers, is that really any different? Wasn’t Pierce the one who helped bring KG and Ray Allen to Boston? Wasn’t Pierce the one who forced a trade to the Nets? There’s a lot of hypocrisy with Pierce, and Draymond put him in his place. It also doesn’t help your cause when you lose by 45 to the Warriors in the preseason.
Should we expect anything less from Draymond? He’s a common sense type of guy. Pierce is continuing what has long been a tired narrative. Draymond’s Apple vs. Google business example was a great metaphor. Anyone who thinks KD is soft or weak for joining the Warriors is being an idiot. Simple as that. Did Durant sign a non-compete with OKC that forbid him from going to another team? Does KD owe it to jersey-burning fans and emotionally sensitive sports writers like Royce Young to stay in OKC? Obviously not.
I thought Draymond was dead on. I think it’s ridiculous for players or former players to speak out. Considering fact they have fought decades for free agency and the right to control their own careers chastising a player for making a decision is hypocritical. Pierce’s reaction is expected from fans, but players should know better. Pierce had his own super team, only it was created by trades instead of his own hands. I liked how Lebron said it was good for the league, recognizing it was a show of players power.