Kevin Durant will not let you get away from Twitter on the Fourth of July, as he will reportedly make his big decision on Monday. Durant is done meeting with teams in The Hamptons, and we're getting conflicting reports about which teams he's still considering. According to ESPN's Royce Young, it's down to the Thunder and Warriors:
From what I understand, it's Thunder versus Warriors for Durant.— Royce Young (@royceyoung) July 4, 2016
However, not too long after that report surfaced, CSNNE's A. Sherrod Blakely reported that the Boston Celtics are still alive in the Durant sweepstakes, and that the superstar is "seriously considering" signing with them. Maybe something Tom Brady said is sticking with him.
At this point, it's anyone's guess where Durant is going to play next year. Here's a case for each of the three teams reportedly still on contention:
An argument for the Thunder: This is the team that drafted him. In the summer preceding his second season in the NBA, general manager Sam Presti drafted Russell Westbrook. In their second season together, they won 50 games; in their third, they went to the NBA Finals. Since then, they have gone into each year rightfully believing they have a shot at a championship. There is young, improving talent on the roster, plus a strong culture that Durant helped to create and talks about at any opportunity. He clearly feels a connection to the city, and it would not be easy to leave. Also, wouldn't it feel better to beat the superteam than to join it?
An argument for the Warriors: Durant would have the opportunity to not just win next season, but compete for titles for years. While Westbrook could leave in free agency next summer, Golden State is in no danger of losing Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson or Draymond Green anytime soon. The Warriors have built not just a championship team, but a workplace and a style of play that makes playing there seem more fun than playing anywhere else. This could be the best and most versatile roster in NBA history with Durant on it, and it's his best bet if his main goal is to win a ring as soon as possible. He said this would be a basketball decision.
An argument for the Celtics: Durant would be able to start the second act of his career by writing a new story rather than joining someone else's in the middle. He would team up with the brightest young coach in the league on a team full of dogged defenders, and he wouldn't have to worry about his co-star, Al Horford, going elsewhere. Boston would become a contender immediately, but it would not be so stacked that anything short of a championship would be considered a failure. This team has all the complementary players Durant could ask for, and, as a bonus, the front office still has plenty of flexibility thanks to years of asset accumulation.
So, should he stay or should he go? He has a few fantastic options here, and the reality is that it doesn't matter what any of us prefer. Durant doesn't owe anybody anything, and this will be over soon.