Warriors Rumors

Warriors Notes: Curry, Durant, Green, Lacob

Stephen Curry made his first public comments Saturday on the Kevin DurantDraymond Green altercation, trying to smooth over an incident that some have suggested could lead to the end of the Warriors‘ dynasty, relays Nick Friedell of ESPN.

“I think the way we’ve handled it as a team, the way Draymond’s handled it, the way KD’s handled it, it’s been nothing but professionalism and understanding that it’s about the team,” Curry told reporters before Saturday’s game. “And the conversations that we’ve all had, whether it’s one-on-one, as a team, is keeping that in mind. We have the opportunity to do something extremely special this year. There’s going to be ups and downs and bumps in the road, whether it’s self-inflicted or whether it’s from outside.”

The Warriors suspended Green for one game for a verbal tirade against Durant in an overtime loss to the Clippers. Durant was calling for the ball at the end of regulation, but Green kept it and committed a turnover. Durant snapped at Green and he unleashed an angry response in which he referenced Durant’s upcoming free agency and allegedly said, “We don’t need you. We won without you. Leave.”

“They have a lot of equity built in their relationship,” Curry said of Durant and Green. “We’ve won championships together. They’ve brought out the best in each other. Obviously, I don’t think they’ve had an incident to this level, but you don’t have the experiences you’ve had and go through the journey that we’ve been on and let it be derailed by something like that. Obviously, from a personal standpoint, there are things that need to be worked through. That’s like any relationship in life. But at the end of the day, they both understand that neither one of them is going to be a reason that we don’t win a championship this year. I can roll with that.”

There’s more Warriors news this morning:

  • Curry, who has missed the past five games, is making progress with a strained left groin, even though he won’t be re-evaluated for another week, Friedell adds in the same story. “Progress is moving in the right direction,” Curry said. “Haven’t had any setbacks or anything like that. But it’s more so about getting full range of motion, doing so where it’s pain-free and things like that. I’m learning about this one. I can tell you everything you want to know about ankles. But this is obviously a new one for me, so trying to make sure I stay cautious, but knowing that we’re moving in the right direction. So I don’t know how long it will be, but that’s all I can pretty much ask for.”
  • Owner Joe Lacob denies that the decision to suspend Green and not Durant means the organization is taking sides in their dispute, relays Al Saracevic of The San Francisco Chronicle“I’ve read and heard all the things people are talking about. That we’re choosing one person over another,” Lacob said. “We’re not choosing anybody over anybody.” He said the decision to discipline Green was “totally a management issue” and complimented GM Bob Myers and coach Steve Kerr on how they handled it.
  • There’s still time to vote in our poll on Durant’s future beyond this season.

Draymond Green To Miss Saturday’s Game With Toe Injury

The Warriors will be without Draymond Green for the fourth time in the team’s last six games as he will miss Saturday’s matchup against the Mavericks due to a right toe sprain, the team announced.

Head coach Steve Kerr said the team will rest Green for a little while before he returns to the court, per Anthony Slater of The Athletic (Twitter link).

“We decided to give him some time off. Don’t know how long it’ll be,” Kerr said. “The toe [sprain] is lingering.” 

The ailment has kept Green out of Golden State’s recent games against the Bucks and Nets. He missed Tuesday’s game against the Hawks due to a suspension stemming from a heated verbal confrontation with teammate Kevin Durant.

Both Green and Durant have since addressed the incident and have stated their intentions to move past it as the Warriors aim for their fourth championship in five seasons.

The 28-year-old has averaged 6.9 PPG, 7.5 RPG and 7.2 APG for the Warriors in 13 games.

Latest Updates On Green, Durant, Warriors

Details continue to trickle out about the confrontation that took place between Kevin Durant and Draymond Green on Monday night, a story that has dominated NBA headlines all week. Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports is the latest to piece together specifics on the barbs exchanged, writing that Green called Durant a “b***h” multiple times, continuing to rant even as head coach Steve Kerr tried to direct his players’ attention to his whiteboard.

Paraphrasing Green’s comments, Haynes reports that the former Defensive Player of the Year shouted something to the effect of “You’re a b***h and you know you’re a b***h,” later adding a comment along the lines of “We don’t need you. We won without you. Leave.”

Sources tell Haynes that there was a point during the argument when Durant cringed, when it evolved from a typical basketball argument into something deeper and more personal.

While the two teammates claimed they’d be fine moving forward, things didn’t get off to a great start in Houston last night, as the Warriors lost by 21 points to the Rockets, with Green going scoreless in 24 minutes. After the game, when Durant was asked by one reporter about his relationship with Green, he tersely told the reporter, “Don’t ask me about that again,” as Mark Medina of The Bay Area News Group relays.

Here’s more out of Golden State:

  • Sources tell Haynes that Green was dismayed that Durant would show him up at such a crucial moment in Monday’s game, and took exception to Durant’s criticism because he felt his desire to win was being questioned. This also came at a time when Green had just returned prematurely from his toe injury, according to Haynes, who cites that early return as an example of how badly the big man wants to be on the court with his teammates.
  • Rival teams and players are “attempting to gather more information on the morale and status” of the Dubs, per Haynes, who says that the saga is being viewed as “promising” for the opposition.
  • Durant, who has the ability to veto any trade this season, has shown no interest in being moved and remains committed to returning to the Finals with the Warriors, a source tells Sam Amick of USA Today. “We’ve got a three-peat upon us,” the source said.
  • Amick suggests that this entire saga isn’t about Durant’s upcoming free agency as much as it’s about Green’s “vocal attitude” about Durant’s free agency. While other Warriors may not love Durant’s approach to his contract situation, Green is the only one to voice his disapproval. “No one cares except for Draymond,” one source said to Amick.

Windhorst: Why Kevin Durant Is NBA's Most Powerful Person

Among these teams were the Warriors, according to Jon Becker of The Mercury News, adding that Chandler narrowed his decision down to the Warriors and Lakers. Chandler, an L.A. native, ultimately chose to sign with the Lakers.

  • ESPN’s Brian Windhorst explains why Kevin Durant is the NBA’s most powerful person, writing about his altercation with teammate Draymond Green from earlier in the week. Durant, a consensus top-3 player in the NBA, could leave the Warriors as a free agent next July.

Poll: Kevin Durant’s Future

When Kevin Durant reaches free agency in 2019, there’s a chance he could be coming off a third straight championship — and maybe even a third consecutive NBA Finals MVP award. Durant already has two of each under his belt, and remains one of the league’s very best players, on a team considered the overwhelming favorite to win the title.

Throw in the fact that Durant will have full Bird rights in 2019, giving him the opportunity to sign a five-year contract worth up to a projected $221MM, and it’s hard to imagine why he’d leave the Warriors, who would have the ability to cement their legacy as one of the NBA’s best teams of all-time as long as they keep racking up titles.

Still, Durant hasn’t committed to the Warriors at all beyond 2018/19, leading to ongoing speculation that he could jump ship at season’s end. The uncertainty surrounding the former MVP played a part in Monday’s altercation between Durant and Draymond Green, who reportedly let out his frustrations during the back-and-forth over the way his teammate has handled his upcoming free agency.

Durant’s free agency will be fascinating for a number of reasons, particularly if the Warriors win the championship again this season. It’s hard to imagine a star player who has won three consecutive titles with a team leaving his organization for a lesser contender. On the other hand, several big-market NBA franchises will have cap room for a max-salary player in 2019, creating some tantalizing possibilities for Durant, who may be ready for a new challenge.

If he’s interested in teaming up with LeBron James and trying to win titles for the league’s most iconic franchise, the Lakers could be appealing. Their Los Angeles rivals, the Clippers, are being run by a effective management team that includes owner Steve Ballmer and veteran executive Jerry West, and would provide Durant an opportunity to be the unquestioned star of an L.A. franchise. The Knicks will have Kristaps Porzingis back, and the idea of playing in Madison Square Garden and turning around a moribund franchise may intrigue Durant and Rich Kleiman, his agent and business partner, who grew up as a Knicks fan.

Several other teams around the NBA will also have cap space in 2019, creating a plethora of viable options for Durant, depending on what his priorities are. Of course, he initially chose the Warriors because he wanted to win and because he wanted to live in the Bay Area, and those factors still arguably make Golden State his best option — especially with the team set to move into its new San Francisco arena next season.

What do you think? Is this Durant’s last season with the Warriors or will he still be playing for the Dubs next season at this time? Vote below in our poll, then head to the comment section to share your two cents.

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

Draymond Green Addresses Durant Confrontation

Speaking today to reporters after the Warriors‘ shootaround, Draymond Green issued his first public comments about the on-court and postgame confrontation between him and Kevin Durant – and other teammates – that took place on Monday.

Green, who didn’t take questions after making a statement, said that he has spoken to Durant and that they’re moving forward, and while he accepted responsibility for the altercation, he didn’t exactly apologize for it (video link via Anthony Slater of The Athletic).

“I think there’s no secret that I’m an emotional player,” Green said. “I wear my emotions on my sleeve and I play with that same emotion. Sometimes it gets the best me and doesn’t work in my favor. I’m going to live with that. Because it works to my favor, in the good, as my résumé speaks and my team’s résumé speaks, more so than it doesn’t. I’m never going to change who I am.”

Dismissing the idea that the incident was the beginning of the end of the Warriors’ dynasty, Green told reporters that the club isn’t going to “crumble” — it’s still on the rest of the league’s 29 teams to knock off the Dubs, since they won’t beat themselves and this week will only make the team stronger, Green said. However, he also acknowledged that he wouldn’t stand in the way if Durant or Klay Thompson or anyone else decides to leave Golden State when they’re eligible for free agency.

“At the end of the day, as I’ve said before, whatever Kevin decides to do, whatever Klay decides to do, whatever (anyone) decides to do, we had great years together,” Green said. “I support everybody wholeheartedly, 100%, because as a man, as a human being, you’ve got the right to do what you want to do with your life. I’d never question that.”

Here’s more on the Warriors’ drama-filled week:

  • Head coach Steve Kerr also spoke to reporters today at shootaround, suggesting that he’s “extremely confident” in his team’s ability to work through the Green/Durant drama (video link via Mark Medina of The Bay Area News Group).
  • A source tells Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated that – with the help of the players’ union – Green plans to appeal the Warriors’ decision to fine him a $120K game check. We learned on Wednesday that Green was surprised by the suspension and fine, a point reiterated by Spears.
  • In a pair of articles published before Green spoke to reporters today, Chris Mannix of SI.com wrote that the incident won’t impede the Warriors’ quest for a third straight championship, while Tim Kawakami of The Athletic took a deep dive to explain some of the nuances involved in the relationships between various Warriors players, as well as between the team and those players.

Stephen Curry Out At Least 10 More Days

Stephen Curry, who is currently sidelined with a strained left groin, is expected to miss at least five more games, according to the Warriors, who announced today in a press release that Curry will be re-evaluated in 10 days.

Based on that timeline, Curry will remain out of action for the team’s upcoming three-game road trip to Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio, as well as next week’s home contests vs. the Thunder and Trail Blazers. The earliest Curry could return would be for the Dubs’ November 24 game vs. Sacramento.

According to the Warriors, however, Curry will travel with the club during that Texas road trip. As Anthony Slater of The Athletic observes (via Twitter), that’s not insignificant, given the drama surrounding the club these days.

Curry’s locker room presence could be important in the coming days, says Slater, noting that the two-time MVP wasn’t in Los Angeles in Monday when Draymond Green and Kevin Durant had an on-court and post-game confrontation.

[RELATED: Latest on Draymond Green, Kevin Durant, Warriors]

With Curry not ready to return, Quinn Cook and Shaun Livingston will continue to handle point guard duties for the Warriors. The team also has an open roster spot if it wants to add more depth, but that’s probably not under consideration at this point.

Latest On Draymond Green, Kevin Durant, Warriors

2:53pm: Shams Charania of The Athletic provides some more details on the situation in Golden State, reiterating that Green was surprised by his one-game suspension and writing that people around Draymond believe this is the sort of thing he won’t easily forget. Still, friends of Green and Durant believe that they’ll soon meet, making an effort to clear the air and move past Monday’s incident.

8:38am: In an article packed with details on Monday night’s confrontation between Draymond Green and Kevin Durant, Marcus Thompson II of The Athletic reports that Green took exception to the way Durant addressed him following his turnover late in Monday’s game.

According to Thompson, Green made it clear that he’s been making plays for the Warriors for years, well before Durant showed up, and wouldn’t stand for KD talking to him like a scrub. Green also accused Durant of making the whole season about him, even though – in Green’s view – he’s going to leave at the end of the year. Green let out his frustrations with the way his teammate has handled his upcoming free agency, per Thompson, who hears that Green also called Durant a “b***h” several times during the exchange.

As Thompson explains, Warriors management felt Green crossed a line and essentially sided with Durant in hitting Green with a one-game suspension, a rebuke that surprised the Michigan State alum.

“With what was said, there is already no way Durant is coming back,” one player told Thompson. “The only hope is that they can say this summer, ‘See, KD. We’ve got your back. We protected you from Draymond.'”

Although the Dubs will be able to point to this incident when Durant reaches free agency to prove he has their full support, Thompson’s account raises doubts about whether it was the right call — if Durant ends up leaving anyway, Golden State will also now have to worry about where things stand with Green.

According to Thompson, the relationship between Green and Durant “needs to be rebuilt,” while the relationship between Green and team management may also now be “in shambles.” This isn’t a situation that will just blow over right away, says Thompson, and that sentiment is echoed by other Bay Area writers, including Dieter Kurtenbach of The Bay Area News Group, Anthony Slater of The Athletic, and Logan Murdock of The Bay Area News Group (Twitter link).

Here’s more on the unexpected drama in Golden State:

  • According to several people in the Warriors’ locker room, Durant could have ended the lingering irritation over his free agency situation by saying how much he loves playing with the Warriors and his teammates, then leaving it at that, Thompson writes. Thompson suggests that Green is among those who believe Durant has had a hand in creating hype about his free agency, distracting from the team’s quest for a third straight title.
  • Thompson reports that Stephen Curry visited Green on Tuesday and Green admitted to Curry that he was wrong for how – and when – he confronted Durant. However, the “general consensus” is that Green’s concerns about Durant’s handling of his upcoming free agency aren’t off base, Thompson adds.
  • Durant spoke to reporters after Tuesday’s game about Green and Monday’s altercation, but his answers were terse, writes Anthony Slater of The Athletic, who provides a partial transcript. In Slater’s view, Green’s barbs stung Durant deeply and he wasn’t ready yet to talk about them publicly — so he didn’t.
  • One prominent player told Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated (Twitter link) that he plans to do everything in his power to get Durant and Green back on the same page.
  • Speaking to reporters, including Slater, Andre Iguodala and Klay Thompson both downplayed the long-lasting impact of Monday’s confrontation. “I think it was an old-school pimp that said: ‘You can’t climb a mountain if it’s smooth,'” Iguodala said. Meanwhile, Thompson offered the following assessment: “A win on Thursday and a win on Saturday and Sunday. That’s called a win streak. (Then) it will not matter and this will be in the past like a ponytail.”

Brandon Rush Working Out For Sixers?

12:08pm: Spears has since deleted his tweet about Rush’s Sixers workout, so it’s unclear whether or not that audition is on the team’s schedule for next week. Either way, it’s safe to say that Philadelphia will explore all its options when it comes to adding shooting to its roster.

12:03pm: Veteran NBA sharpshooter Brandon Rush has a workout lined up with the Sixers next week, a source tells Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated (Twitter link). According to Spears, Rush suffered a broken thumb on September 10, but has since recovered from that injury.

A previous report had suggested that Rush was among a group of players who worked out for the Timberwolves on September 10, so the injury may have occurred during that session. Before breaking his thumb, the 33-year-old also drew some interest from the Pacers and Warriors, Spears reports.

Rush, the 13th overall pick back in 2008, has appeared in 481 career regular season games for the Pacers, Warriors, Jazz, and Timberwolves. While his overall career numbers – 6.8 PPG and 2.9 RPG in 22.0 MPG) – are modest, Rush has always been a reliable outside shooter, with a career .402 3PT%. He signed a 10-day contract with the Trail Blazers last season, but didn’t see the court and hasn’t played in an NBA game since the end of the 2016/17 campaign.

Having traded two of their strongest long-distance marksmen to Minnesota in their blockbuster deal for Jimmy Butler, the 76ers are in the market for shooting help and have an open roster spot. General manager Elton Brand said on Tuesday that Philadelphia will be patient and evaluate all its options for that roster opening, so I wouldn’t expect the club to immediately lock up Rush to a contract.

Draymond Green Suspended For One Game

Draymond Green will sit out of tonight’s game against the Hawks, Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports reports (Twitter link). The Warriors will suspend him without pay, as ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweets.

Green’s absence from the court comes just one night after he clashed with Kevin Durant during and after Monday’s loss to the Clippers. Green attempted to win the game himself during the closing seconds of regulation, committing a turnover and sending the game to overtime. Both All-Stars appeared angry prior to overtime and after the loss, Green reportedly was “forceful” in defending himself on the play that could have won them the game.

Green also reportedly challenged Durant about KD’s upcoming free agency during the confrontation. Durant is expected to decline his player option and hit the open market next summer.

Klay Thompson, who is usually reserved in most situations, spoke up in the locker room, Haynes relays in a full-length piece. The shooting guard reportedly talked with his teammates about the altercation and attempted to unify the team.

The suspension will cost Green roughly $120K, Bobby Marks of ESPN.com tweets. He is expected to be back with the team on Thursday against the Rockets, as the Warriors announce that it will be a one-game suspension (via Twitter). The official reasoning is conduct detrimental to the team.