Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby Kobe8Fan on Sat Jul 27, 2013 10:40 am

Kevin Durant On Thunder's Offseason Moves: 'I Love It’

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LAS VEGAS -- Kevin Durant will henceforth be known as the face of two franchises.

"The face of USA Basketball going forward," to be precise, is how Jerry Colangelo put it at Wednesday's impromptu news conference here in the desert, officially elevating Durant internationally to the same status he has held in Oklahoma City for the past five seasons.

Yet the rough reality for Durant is that only one of his teams these days is awash in excitement.

Mike Krzyzewski confessed to be deeply touched by Durant's arrival Tuesday night in the midst of this Team USA minicamp because he wanted to tell his national team coach face-to-face that he's committing some 12 months early to the squad that will be in Spain in the fall of 2014 to compete in the inaugural FIBA World Cup.

"I get chills just thinking that a guy of his stature and his accomplishments," Krzyzewski said, " ... would come here personally to say it."

The story back home with the Thunder, though, isn't nearly as warm. Not after a tepid offseason in which Oklahoma City -- still facing steep luxury-tax concerns even after trading away James Harden last October -- let Kevin Martin go in free agency and just lost out to the Memphis Grizzlies in the race to sign free-agent marksman Mike Miller.

Now we're talking about Durant here, so there wasn't a single word uttered during Wednesday's session with the media signaling dissatisfaction with the Thunder's summer.

However ...

It certainly left you wondering when the 24-year-old, when asked to assess his team's business to date in July, offered nothing more than "I love it" before walking away from the assembled press pack to bring the interview to a halt.

Which is certainly not the norm with one of the foremost gentlemen in the modern game.

Because of the long-term money invested in Durant, Russell Westbrook and Serge Ibaka, Oklahoma City made the decision to settle for creating a trade exception to salvage something from Martin's free-agent exodus to Minnesota. The Thunder, by limiting themselves to low-cost moves in free agency, are thus putting the onus on Westbrook's recovery from knee surgery and the continued development of youngsters such as Reggie Jackson and Jeremy Lamb to enable their star trio to be sufficient to keep the club inching closer to a championship.

Yet it has to sting to hear the latest rumbles in circulation about Miller -- personally recruited by Durant to come to OKC after Miami let him go via the amnesty clause -- choosing Memphis in part because Miller sees the Grizzlies as closer to getting to the Finals than the Thunder.

We repeat: This is Durant. So it's a bit of a leap to outright say he's dismayed with developments in OKC on the basis of one walk-off answer. Many of the reporters around him, truth be told, broke out into laughter when Durant brought a halt to the question-and-answer session so abruptly.

Thunder officials can only hope Durant was simply in a rush to do what always wants to do most. Which is to say ... play.

Durant arrived at the Mendenhall Center gym on the campus of UNLV Wednesday afternoon wearing skateboard shoes and some funky camouflage socks. But when the practice floor finally cleared, Durant pulled out some of his signature sneaks in neon green to join fellow Team USA 2014 cornerstone Kevin Love and noted trainer Rob McClanaghan for a round of shooting drills on a corner court.

"I hope no one looks at [Durant and Love's visit] as an overshadowing of these guys [in camp]," Krzyzewski said. "I think it brings a bigger spotlight to what they're doing [this week] to be quite frank with you. I think they wanted these young guys to see how good they felt about what's happened for them [with Team USA]."

Coach K needn't worry. All the lingering curiosities about Durant these days are Thunder-related.

There are no longer 12 spots open on the Team USA plane to Spain for the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup. The Yanks are already down to 10 vacancies after Wednesday's announcement from the Kevins -- Durant and Love -- that they're both in.

And with Durant predicting that Westbrook and Harden will be making themselves available as well, Team USA might well be looking to select just eight of the 28 players who were gathered in the desert this week for practices Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday leading into Thursday night's NBA TV-televised scrimmage.

Krzyzewski, though, has been stressing to the campers all week to try to ignore the numbers and just play, insisting that "this is not a decision-making time" and that no one here will be eliminated from World Cup consideration until much closer to the day that Spain-bound plane actually takes off.

The practice-floor intensity was dialed back Wednesday, with Krzyzewski likening the array of drills to "the day before a medal-round game" after two intense days filled with 5-on-5 clashes at full speed.

Milwaukee's Larry Sanders, who suffered a sprained left ankle during Tuesday's workout, has been ruled out of the televised scrimmage. Ditto for collegians Marcus Smart and Doug McDermott, for whom it was always planned to keep them out of the week's main game.

But there are still two full teams that will duel in the 9 p.m. ET tipoff, with Krzyzewski's two newest assistants taking charge of them. The White squad will be coached by the Hornets' Monty Williams; Chicago's Tom Thibodeau gets the Blue squad.

As for the rosters ...


http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/id/95076 ... ls-thrills

Sam Presti screwed up now that Kevin Durant is pissed.
Last edited by Kobe8Fan on Sun Aug 11, 2013 12:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Kevin Durant On Thunder's Offseason Moves: 'I Love It’

Postby revgen on Sat Jul 27, 2013 11:43 am

Thunder FO screwed up royally when they could've kept Harden by amnestying Perkins. Why they wanted to keep Perkins and screw Harden I'll never know.
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Re: Kevin Durant On Thunder's Offseason Moves: 'I Love It’

Postby wcsoldier81 on Sat Jul 27, 2013 2:08 pm

3 seasons left to win a title OKC ... if it doesn't happen , he's gone
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Re: Kevin Durant On Thunder's Offseason Moves: 'I Love It’

Postby 432J on Sat Jul 27, 2013 5:23 pm

revgen wrote:Thunder FO screwed up royally when they could've kept Harden by amnestying Perkins. Why they wanted to keep Perkins and screw Harden I'll never know.

not only that but trading him to a conference foe in houston

presti is an idiot
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Re: Kevin Durant On Thunder's Offseason Moves: 'I Love It’

Postby revgen on Sat Jul 27, 2013 5:25 pm

Presti isn't a total idiot. He knows how to draft. But unlike Mitch, his wand is broken when it comes to the other issues.
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Re: Kevin Durant On Thunder's Offseason Moves: 'I Love It’

Postby Battle Tested20 on Sat Jul 27, 2013 10:29 pm

revgen wrote:Presti isn't a total idiot. He knows how to draft. But unlike Mitch, his wand is broken when it comes to the other issues.

This.
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Re: Kevin Durant On Thunder's Offseason Moves: 'I Love It’

Postby V.V.V.V.V. on Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:52 pm

They got lucky when drafting Durant. I would bet that if Oden was available, they would have drafted him over Durant. And where would they be now?
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Re: Kevin Durant On Thunder's Offseason Moves: 'I Love It’

Postby Scnottaken on Sun Jul 28, 2013 11:58 pm

V.V.V.V.V. wrote:They got lucky when drafting Durant. I would bet that if Oden was available, they would have drafted him over Durant. And where would they be now?

To be fair, Oden wouldn't have had the Blazer's curse on him, and maybe he wouldn't have broken down immediately.
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Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby Kobe8Fan on Sun Aug 11, 2013 12:43 pm

Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Future

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By Darnell Mayberry Published: August 10, 2013

The changing landscape of the Western Conference hasn't changed Kevin Durant's outlook on his team's chances.

“It's not about what other teams are doing,” Durant told The Oklahoman. “It's about what we're going to do every single game. That's how we approach it.”

Durant, speaking at his fifth annual basketball camp Friday on the campus of OU, returned to Oklahoma carrying unwavering confidence and commitment, in himself, his teammates and their combined abilities to keep the Oklahoma City Thunder atop the conference standings.

Despite the Thunder's relatively quiet offseason, one that's been void of impactful additions and widely labeled disappointing, Durant expressed belief in the direction of the team and the players that are in place.

The Thunder lost sixth man Kevin Martin to Minnesota and allowed seldom-used swingman Ronnie Brewer to walk. Oklahoma City then re-signed Derek Fisher and inked forward Ryan Gomes. In the June draft, the Thunder selected Steven Adams, Andre Roberson, Grant Jerrett and Alex Abrines. Abrines will remain overseas, and none of the other additions are expected to be high-level contributors on the court this season.

“People that really knew, as far as our money situation, knew that we couldn't sign anybody too big,” Durant said. “We got myself, Russell (Westbrook), (Kendrick Perkins) and Serge (Ibaka) all locked in on big contracts so it's kind of hard to sign (someone). Everybody wants us to get the biggest free agents, but it's kind of hard to do that with the money that we have (committed) and the tax and the new CBA. So it was kind of difficult. But we knew the business side of it. But we know we have a really good team.”

The Thunder has more than $53 million committed to Westbrook, Durant, Ibaka and Perkins this season. The league's salary cap for the 2013-14 season has been set at $58.6 million, limiting the Thunder's ability to make any real noise this summer.

Still, the Thunder tried to lure a few free agents, namely Mike Miller and Dorell Wright. Miller ultimately chose to return to Memphis, where he spent 5 1/2 seasons earlier in his career, and Wright landed in Portland on a slightly more lucrative contract than the Thunder could offer.

Durant confirmed reports that he did indeed recruit both players, saying he “talked to Dorell and Mike a few times.” It was the first time Durant used his status to help recruit free agents to Oklahoma City.

“I texted those guys and let them know that it was no hard feelings if they didn't want to come to Oklahoma City, which is cool with me because those guys got to make decisions for their families,” Durant said. “Hopefully down the line we can get some players to come play for us.”

In the meantime, you won't catch Durant voicing any disappointment or displeasure in team decisions. He labeled an ESPN.com report that he walked off during an interview last month when asked to assess the franchise's moves overblown. As he walked off, Durant reportedly said “I love it,” his tone apparently leaving reporters left guessing about his true feelings.

“I didn't mean anything by that,” Durant said. “I love it. I love who we're bringing in. I love the coaching we have here. And whoever comes in here, no matter what they've done before, we're going to change them into a Thunder player, which is a character guy, a guy that's going to work hard every single day and is going to be a great teammate.

“Those guys (the media), I really don't care what they have to say about our team and what they think we need because they never stepped on the court and played and been in battle. I've been there and I know what we need on this team and I know that we have it. And I trust in Sam Presti and Troy Weaver and those guys in the front office to put great players around us all.”

Other teams have stolen the headlines and shifted the attention from the Thunder this summer thanks to their splashy moves and OKC's untimely second-round exit.

Houston landed Dwight Howard in free agency. The Los Angeles Clippers plucked coach Doc Rivers from Boston, while also adding J.J. Redick, Jared Dudley and Darren Collison. Golden State added Andre Iguodala, Jermaine O'Neal and Marreese Speights. Denver welcomed J.J. Hickson, Darrell Arthur, Nate Robinson and Randy Foye. New Orleans netted Jrue Holiday, Tyreke Evans and Anthony Morrow.

But the unspoken belief in Oklahoma City, seemingly led by Durant's quiet confidence, is those teams are playing catch up.

It's the Thunder that still possesses the conference's most talented roster, the Thunder that has improved its winning percentage in five consecutive seasons and the Thunder that advanced farther in the playoffs for three straight seasons before an unfortunate injury to Westbrook derailed that progression this past season.

And it's Oklahoma City that Durant is eager to prove the Western Conference still goes through.

“If you don't win then people tend to forget about you and they don't think you're as good,” Durant said. “That's how it is. We know the name of the game. We just got to go out there and do what we do.”


http://newsok.com/oklahoma-city-thunder ... 60/?page=2
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby therealdeal on Sun Aug 11, 2013 1:29 pm

Of any players that are younger and currently with the team that drafted them, I see he and Rose as the two that are least likely to move on to somewhere else.
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby Rooscooter on Sun Aug 11, 2013 5:16 pm

So.... the Thunder sign Ibake and Perkins to horrid deals.... let Harden go... let Martin go.... and they hope to ATTRACT new talented players..... :man10:
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby LTLakerFan on Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:26 pm

Lighten up.... they got D-Fish coming back :man1: :man10:
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby D.B. Cooper on Sun Aug 11, 2013 10:40 pm

therealdeal wrote:Of any players that are younger and currently with the team that drafted them, I see he and Rose as the two that are least likely to move on to somewhere else.

I would agree, but I think I read not too long ago(might have been Yahoo!) that said Rose would prefer to play elsewhere even tho he's a Chicago native.
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby Battle Tested20 on Mon Aug 12, 2013 12:09 am

LTLakerFan wrote:Lighten up.... they got D-Fish coming back :man1: :man10:

:man10:
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby wcsoldier81 on Mon Aug 12, 2013 10:14 am

therealdeal wrote:Of any players that are younger and currently with the team that drafted them, I see he and Rose as the two that are least likely to move on to somewhere else.


Do you think KD will stay in OKC if he hasn't won a title when his current contract is up ?

He doesn't strike me as a player who is cool with not winning at all .

3 seasons left to win a title ... if it doesn't happen , he's gone imo
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby trodgers on Mon Aug 12, 2013 10:47 am

Durant doesn't seem to understand that it IS about what other teams are doing.
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby therealdeal on Mon Aug 12, 2013 11:34 am

D.B. Cooper wrote:
therealdeal wrote:Of any players that are younger and currently with the team that drafted them, I see he and Rose as the two that are least likely to move on to somewhere else.

I would agree, but I think I read not too long ago(might have been Yahoo!) that said Rose would prefer to play elsewhere even tho he's a Chicago native.

Really? Could you find a link on that? That would be a really interesting read.
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby therealdeal on Mon Aug 12, 2013 11:36 am

wcsoldier81 wrote:
therealdeal wrote:Of any players that are younger and currently with the team that drafted them, I see he and Rose as the two that are least likely to move on to somewhere else.


Do you think KD will stay in OKC if he hasn't won a title when his current contract is up ?

He doesn't strike me as a player who is cool with not winning at all .

3 seasons left to win a title ... if it doesn't happen , he's gone imo

I think he would stay in Oklahoma if he thought there was still a chance to win. We'll see in the next two years whether or not Oklahoma makes strides to get better. Over the last two years (year and a half really) they've done a lot of damage to their pristine image of a small-market organization.

I think that Durant likes being the megastar in the small market. I think he likes the idea of bringing a Championship to a team that doesn't have one yet in a new city. I think if they're still making routine deep playoff runs by the end of his contract, he re-signs.
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby abeer3 on Fri Aug 16, 2013 5:40 am

missed this. that's the way you want your franchise player to talk. and I think he's right about them just worrying about playing. they still have Durant and westbrook, which, against any team not named Miami, is probably enough to win a playoff series.

the team that made the most offseason noise is using their former sixth man as a franchise cornerstone and starts Jeremy lin at pg. in other words, they have reason to be confident despite no big splashes.
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby charvin on Mon Aug 19, 2013 1:32 pm

therealdeal wrote:
wcsoldier81 wrote:
therealdeal wrote:Of any players that are younger and currently with the team that drafted them, I see he and Rose as the two that are least likely to move on to somewhere else.


Do you think KD will stay in OKC if he hasn't won a title when his current contract is up ?

He doesn't strike me as a player who is cool with not winning at all .

3 seasons left to win a title ... if it doesn't happen , he's gone imo

I think he would stay in Oklahoma if he thought there was still a chance to win. We'll see in the next two years whether or not Oklahoma makes strides to get better. Over the last two years (year and a half really) they've done a lot of damage to their pristine image of a small-market organization.

I think that Durant likes being the megastar in the small market. I think he likes the idea of bringing a Championship to a team that doesn't have one yet in a new city. I think if they're still making routine deep playoff runs by the end of his contract, he re-signs.


Agree, but I'm not holding out on OKC's FO doing anything special to win a championship. After looking at their salary cap situation, I'm suddenly not too optimistic for them. They'll have $48 million tied up to 3 players in Durant's final year (2015-2016), and $61 million for 2014-2015 (excluding Sefolosha, whom I assume they'll want to keep).

If they continue their ways and cut costs, Durant might not feel to good about re-signing in the near future.
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Re: Kevin Durant Hoping Thunder Can Attract Free Agents In Futur

Postby therealdeal on Mon Aug 19, 2013 1:53 pm

charvin wrote:Agree, but I'm not holding out on OKC's FO doing anything special to win a championship. After looking at their salary cap situation, I'm suddenly not too optimistic for them. They'll have $48 million tied up to 3 players in Durant's final year (2015-2016), and $61 million for 2014-2015 (excluding Sefolosha, whom I assume they'll want to keep).

If they continue their ways and cut costs, Durant might not feel to good about re-signing in the near future.

A team built around Durant and Westbrook (assuming Westbrook recovers nicely) will always be among the top of the Western Conference. I have no doubt they'll find their way back into the Conference Finals at some point before Durant's contract is up and that could be enough to keep him there.
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