Golden State Warriors star forward Kevin Durant said he is ready to move on from last weeks blow up with Draymond Green and the incident will have no influence on his future with the franchise.
“Nah [it wont factor],” Durant told Yahoo Sports.
“Because at the end of the day, I’m just a ballplayer that’s just trying to be in a great environment to play basketball and groom my skills everyday. And I want to compete on a level that once the game starts, I’m just totally comfortable with my surroundings, with just going out there and being me.”
Durant is expected to decline a player option for the 2019-20 season so he can enter free agency at the end of this season Concerns were raised that rising tensions between the two stars could result in Durant choosing to leave the franchise in July 2019, but he said there are no issues between him and Green.
“I never really felt like it was a problem, because I know Dray and he says some crazy [expletive] out his mouth all the time,” Durant told Yahoo Sports.
“But on top of that, it was just that there was so much coming with it from the outside, and so much stuff that we have to answer now.”
In his first one-on-one interview since the incident, Durant said it didn’t take him long to put things into perspective.
“I was upset, but I know that I can’t hold onto something like this,” Durant told Yahoo Sports.
“I know that I’ve got to make a choice with myself, like how long are you going to be upset about this to the point where you’re going to let it affect what you do on the floor or how you approach the game?
“Once if gets out there now, I got to make a grown-man decisions and tell myself, ‘Look, man, no matter what, you still got to come to work every single day. It’s going to work out. It’s gong to figure itself out.’ And I think everyone’s been handling it the best way they could and we’re just trying to move forward with it.”
The two All-Stars decided to move on and put their energy towards the team championship quest after Green approached Durant in Houston, following his one game suspensions for “conduct detrimental to the team” during the overtime loss to the Clippers on November 12.
But Durant said he didn’t view the incident as severe as everyone else made it out to be.
“After the game against Atlanta [the night after the incident], I’m like, ‘I need to talk after the game?'” Durant said.
“During the game, I’m like, ‘Ah, [Expletive], I’m probably going to have to say something about this.’ Why do I have to think about that during the basketball game? And that’s a fight I had to have, focussing on just playing”
“And that’s what I tend to focus on, but you’ve got so much B.S that’s being thrown your way that I didn’t create. If I created all of this stuff, then I couldn’t be out here talking like this, but I didn’t create any of this. I’m just out here playing.”
That was potentially the hardest part of the experience for the nine-time All-Star.
“My whole thing is I didn’t create any of this,” he continued.
“That’s just my whole thing. I was just playing basketball. Now I got to answer questions, now I got to talk about this, now I got to feel a way when I was in a great zone playing basketball.. Now its always going to come back.
“Like, ‘Are they all right? Man, he didn’t play well. Is he going to leave?’ Why do I even have to think about that at this point?… Then it turned into, ‘K.D’s going to this place, he doesn’t like the Warriors no more. He should go here, he should go there.’ More distractions.”
Despite the problems, Durant said the situation could unite the team.
“When you go through some adversity in your personal relationships and you kind of lay everything out on the table with that human, that person, you start to just really get an understanding for everything,” Durant said
“… I feel like we’ll all do that at some point. Not just me and Draymond, but I feel like just being with these guys for so long that you start to get comfortable.”
The Warriors dropped their fourth-straight game today against the OKC Thunder at home to slide to 12-7 on the season and sixth in the Western Conference.