Kevin Durant’s pending free agency has no less than one NBA Hall of Famer scratching his head.
Rick Barry, who won a NBA Championship with the Warriors in 1975, is totally perplexed by the very idea of the Golden State All-Star leaving the franchise to conceivably join the Knicks.
“He has a chance to be part of something exceptional, something so special. Why would you want to leave that when you can have fun playing the game the right way?” he told Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News on Friday. “You’re not going to have to be the guy who has to do everything to be able to win. You’re going to a place like that your chances of winning are diminished greatly.
“So you’re giving up the chance to be a champion when you were just the two-time MVP in the finals to go and be what? For what purpose? To go to New York where you’re going to be under a microscope to a point that you don’t even realize the microscope that you’re going to be under. To leave a team where you have so many of these great players, I think it would be a silly decision and the wrong decision on his part.”
Durant, 30, is planned to wind up a free agent this mid year and it is everything except an inevitable end product that he will cut ties with the Warriors in spite of winning two NBA Finals titles and will be in conflict for a third this spring.
The 10-time All-Star forward got a ton of analysis for joining the star-studded Warriors three years prior and is believed to need to demonstrate he can convey a group to a championship without taking the easy route.
Barry, 74, does not see the reason in doing that.
“Who gives a crap about (Durant’s) legacy? He’s already one of the greatest in the history of the game,” he said. “Nobody has ever been like him. He’s an anomaly. There’s never been a player who played that position like he plays. Never. So he’s something special already. What does he have to prove? If that’s the reason he’s going to do it is to prove he can do it, he might not get it done.”
The Knicks have had only two winning seasons over the most recent 18 years and just exchanged away their greatest star in Kristaps Porzingis.
However the front office remains “exceptionally idealistic” on marking Durant and the exchange has given the Knicks the infrastructure to sign him and another star player to a maximum contract.
“Selfishly, I want him to stay because I love the way he plays and I think he makes the Warriors such a great team and they have a chance to be one of the unique teams in the history of the game,” Barry said. “Why would you want to leave that? What reason?”
While the Hall of Famer has close connections to the Warriors, he additionally familiar what accompanies playing in New York.
Barry was born and raised simply outside New York City in Elizabeth, New Jersey and played for the New Jersey Nets in the ABA.
So he additionally stresses how Durant would deal with the spotlight that accompanies playing in New York.
“He’s a guy from a little town (in Maryland) and stuff,” Barry said. “He wants to go to New York? New York compared to the Bay Area where sports are like, okay. But it’s not New York. I mean, c’mon.”