Pacific Notes: Green, Durant, J. Smith, LeBron

Draymond Green and Kevin Durant will face off tonight for the first time since their confrontation two years ago that some believe led to Durant leaving the Warriors, writes Monte Poole of NBC Sports. The dispute resulted from a situation late in a tie game when Green grabbed a defensive rebound, dribbled the ball upcourt and committed a turnover rather than giving it to Durant. Green, who received a one-game suspension from the team for the incident, reportedly challenged Durant about his impending free agency during the spat.

Poole doesn’t expect the two players to be matched up directly very often tonight, as Green typically guards the interior with three centers sidelined, while Durant is usually on the perimeter. However, Green, who missed the December 22 game with the Nets, may look at the matchup as a chance to make a statement.

“The one thing we all know about Draymond is there’s not a better competitor, not a player who looks forward to competition more, than Draymond,” Golden State coach Steve Kerr said. “So, I know he’s looking forward to (Saturday).”

There’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • ESPN’s Nick Friedell believes Durant may consider a return to the Warriors before his career is over, relays Grant Liffman of NBC Sports. Appearing on the DubsTalk podcast, Friedell suggested that Durant’s time away from the team has healed some old wounds and that “he’s going to do what he feels most comfortable with in that moment” when it comes time for his next career decision. Durant is under contract through the end of next season and has a $43,928,850 player option for 2022/23.
  • Jalen Smith hasn’t seen much playing time in his first NBA season, but the Suns are content to bring him along slowly, according to Kevin Zimmerman of Arizona Sports 98.7. Smith, who was sidelined by COVID-19 in parts of December and January, has appeared in just seven games, averaging. 6.9 minutes per night. “He’s a diligent worker,” coach Monty Williams said. “I don’t think any young player understands how hard you have to work to be a good player in this league. He embraced that part, which we’re really pleased with. He doesn’t miss days to get work in.”
  • The LakersLeBron James and Kyle Kuzma both received warnings for flopping in Friday’s game against the Grizzlies, the NBA announced on its website.
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14 thoughts on “Pacific Notes: Green, Durant, J. Smith, LeBron

  1. Sensitive Fanboy

    Durant could go back to the Warriors. Reunions happen often, but Green & Kerr won’t be there. I’d bet on that.

  2. Marty McRae

    Draymond to Lakers or wherever Bron is, which means it will be the Splash Bros plus KD and Kawhi = 5 more finals

    • Walladipo and Wood

      You gotta listen to Marty on this one, he knows what he’s talking about.

      • Noel1982

        I just don’t know where he’s even getting at with Kawhi kd or any max free agent when warriors are gonna be way over the tax the next three years

        • Lil_D_Top_3

          Apparently Lacob and his 1%er buddies don’t care about the tax. They even tried to reopen their arena at the height of covid to keep printing money and Newsome (thankfully) said no.

          Marty/strike four’s mindset is there is no problem money cant fix…but titles are not for sale. Sorry *shrugs*

          • Walladipo and Wood

            They still have a $9M disabled player exception that’s good for two more months. I’m sure the Warriors will use it before it expires, go ahead and free up a roster spot and add a little more to their $137M tax bill. No biggie, money grows on trees in California. Right?

            • El Don

              Finally you get it, dude!!!
              Any owner that has a franchise to make money, should be banned on the spot from owning one…
              They wanna make money, they have other businesses for that, right?
              You own a team to spend all the money it makes, & realistically you should have to add some money from your pocket into it!
              I haven’t really liked the GSW teams of the last 20 years, but I was a great fan of them in the 80’s & 90’s… but the point is that even if they don’t play very good ball, their organization right now is the best in the league, just for the money they are willing to spend, even if they make wrong decisions, they really put their money where there mouth is, which almost all other franchises don’t!

              • Noel1982

                They can spend all they want and that’s good prefer that then the owners who are misers, but when you’re so far over the tax it makes adding stars from the outside esp star free agents esp impossible! Like for his example Kawhi and Durant they couldn’t legally sign and trade for either let alone both until they guarantee they won’t be a tax team at all !

  3. KnickerbockerAl

    Don’t get why Wiggins n Westbrook get a bad rap. I still like them both. Watched Wiggins tonight. His D was good and he really tries to fit in offense. Warriors D was horrible. Nets O is looking better better. Nets still can use a big. Small ball is not winning a ring. Still don’t understand why Warriors won’t sign a big. Didn’t look good tonight. Nets had 35 ast, that’s huge.

    • El Don

      When you have The Beard in your team you are gonna rack up an insane amount of assists more times than not, right?

    • x_burner_X

      Its more about their contracts than players themselves. Wiggins is a nice role player, but not at 35 mil a year.

      • KnickerbockerAl

        I agree he’s not worth max money. But he can still put up 22 a gm on right team. And he’s trying to fit in on Warriors. That’s a good sign to me. I wouldn’t mind Knicks taking a chance on him. Maybe Thibs can help him like he’s helped Randle.

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