Kevin Durant free agency: Warriors GM says he'll give K.D. 'whatever he wants'
The contract negotiations won't take long for K.D. and the Warriors
Last summer, Kevin Durant agreed to take less than the max contract he obviously deserved in order to put the Warriors in a better position to keep its run going. It clearly worked, as Golden State was able to give Stephen Curry a max contract and retain Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston, all of whom helped the franchise to its second straight NBA championship, and third in four seasons.
Durant opted out of the $26 million final year of his contract to become a free agent once again this summer, but there's little doubt that he will re-sign with Golden State. If he wants a max contract this time around, however, he's apparently going to get it.
While speaking to the media on Monday, Warriors general manager Bob Myers had a simple response when asked about Durant's potential contract negotiations.
"Whatever he wants," Myers said. "Sometimes you don't negotiate.
"I'd love to have him for 10 years. But, Kevin Durant, look at what he did last year for us. He did us a great service. He's earned the right to sign whatever deal he wants. I just want him to sign a deal. I want him to be happy and want him to know we want him as long as he wants to be here. He's earned that to lay out the terms."
Well, that was easy. If Durant wants the max, he's getting the max. It only makes sense for a 29-year-old who just won his second straight Finals MVP and is commonly considered to be the second-best basketball player on the planet. Not to mention that he already took a pay cut last season, and players of his caliber are rarely asked to do that multiple times, as Myers alluded to.
The question is whether Durant will want to potentially handcuff his team by accepting a max offer. The Warriors' bench was quite thin and center-heavy this season, and Kerr hinted on Monday at possibly balancing out the rotation with more wings next year. In order to get quality 3-and-D guys, they might need to spend a little bit of money.
By joining the Warriors in the first place, Durant sent the clear message that winning was his top priority. He's dealt with the immeasurable hatred and backlash from choosing to sign with his rival after leaving Oklahoma City, so in theory he probably wouldn't mind sacrificing some more money if it means continuing Golden State's dynasty for a few more seasons.
However, there's no doubt that he's earned every cent of a max contract. If that's what he wants, then that's what Myers and the Warriors have to give him, even if it means potentially sacrificing the bench and footing an exorbitant luxury tax bill next year.
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