Since Kevin Durant left the Oklahoma City Thunder to join the Golden State Warriors in the summer of 2016, the rest of the league has been trying to catch-up. A few teams have gotten close to taking down the superteam, but none have succeeded. Now with the addition of DeMarcus Cousins, who knows how much further ahead they’ll put themselves ahead of the rest of the pack.
Well basketball fans, there may be some good news coming ahead. Chris Mannix, a writer and analyst for Yahoo Sports and NBC Sports Boston, went on “The Herd” with Colin Cowherd to discuss what he believed KD might do next offseason.
“I don’t think he finishes in Golden State. Look, after next season, he’s going to have $80 million in his pocket from the last three years and probably three championships,” Mannix said. “So at 30 years old, Kevin Durant is basically going to have a blank canvas. He can do whatever he wants knowing that his legacy is secure … I think Kevin Durant will be open-minded next summer when it comes to where he wants to go.”
He continues the discussion, and brings up OKC:
“I keep going back to Oklahoma City. I keep going back to the fact that everything we know about Kevin Durant, the sensitivities, how much he hates the fact that people say he jumped on Steph Curry’s bandwagon, and the fact that there’s been no bridge burnt with Oklahoma City. The relationship with Russell Westbrook seems to be the best it’s been since he left Oklahoma City. I know that there’s some financial gymnastics you have to do to get a Kevin Durant on the roster, but I really believe come the end of the year, he’s going to take a long look at Oklahoma City.”
By the time the next NBA offseason rolls around, KD could quite possibly have three rings around his fingers and enough money to be able to retire. If the Warriors accomplished the three-peat and give Curry, Draymond, Klay, and Iggy their fourth championship ring, KD might be content with walking away from the Warriors’ dynasty with three.
If another NBA title is in the Warriors’ and KD’s future, then there would be nothing to come between Durant and his name being mentioned with the greats when his career is all said and done. He’d have all the money he could need, plus sponsorships, and will have just as many rings as LeBron. Not that it’s a chase, but you know what I mean. He will have the option to be able to go wherever he wants to further his legacy. Add on a few more championships and scoring titles, and he could finish as a top-10 player of all-time.
This reunion would remind me of when LeBron returned to Cleveland. All the fans who bashed LeBron and burned his jersey welcomed him back with open arms. We all know what happened next; they won their first ever championship in franchise history. Forgiveness can go a long way.
Bad blood doesn’t last forever, especially if that player returns home and delivers a championship. OKC fans, I can relate to the feeling of betrayal when a player joins a rival (*cough* Ray Allen *cough*). It sucks, but that feeling doesn’t last forever.
If KD wants to return to where it all started, it won’t shock me in the slightest. In my opinion, he has unfinished business in OKC, and with Russell. I also believe that the Thunder would instantly become a top-3 team if he came back. It’s far-fetched and it may not work just because of financial reasons, but I don’t think it’s crazy to think he’ll at least consider OKC. Don’t get too ahead just yet, because we still have at least one more year of the Warriors’ dynasty to go through.
Photo: USA Today