Jeff Chiu / Associated Press
Regardless of how the Golden State Warriors fare in the 2019 playoffs, it will not affect Kevin Durant's decision in free agency.
According to Tim Kawakami of The Athletic, ""Most people in the NBA do not expect Durant to re-sign with the Warriors, no matter what happens in the playoffs."
Durant is expected to reject his contract option for the 2019-20 season, which would allow him to become a free agent without restrictions. Before that happens, KD is trying to take the Warriors to a third consecutive NBA championship.
Kawakami added that the Warriors have approached this postseason with the idea that there will be no difficult feelings if KD decides to leave during the off-season, although he is not sure that the team really feels that way: "It's the unspoken bargain. I think the leaders of the Warriors did it all: they come together to give them a drink for three pounds and then, if Durant leaves, he leaves without apologizing, but there is also an inherent tension, of course. "
Durant has not made promises or commitments when asked about his plans for free agency during the 2018-19 season, which has naturally led to speculation that he might be leaving.
Of all the possible destinations for Durant, the New York Knicks are the equipment that has been mentioned most frequently. Rumors continue to revolve about Durant going to the Big Apple, and among the most recent developments, Max Kellerman said last week on ESPN First shot is "hearing more and more" that Durant and Kyrie Irving join forces with the Knicks is a "real thing".
Durant, 30, is in the middle of his third season with the Warriors, and his decision to leave the Oklahoma City Thunder for Golden State has paid off so far.
Durant has been three times All-Star as a member of the Warriors, and has been named MVP of the NBA Finals in each of the past two seasons. He will look to make three in a row in these playoffs.
While Golden State is the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference, it is tied 1-1 in its first-round playoff series with the Los Angeles Clippers, seeded in eighth-seeded, after having a 31-point lead in Game 2 The Warriors also lost Center DeMarcus Cousins to a torn quad.
The Houston Rockets are another potential hurdle between the Warriors and the NBA Finals after pushing them to seven games in the Western Conference Finals last season, and both the Milwaukee Bucks and the Toronto Raptors had a better regular season record. than the Warriors of the East. .
A hat trick is far from a guarantee for Golden State, and if Durant and Klay Thompson have the option of retiring in free agency during the offseason, this could be the Warriors' last chance to win a championship.