Brooklyn Nets: NBA Finals matchup bad for Brooklyn’s superteam dream

Brooklyn Nets Kevin Durant D'Angelo Russell (Photo by Matteo Marchi/Getty Images)
Brooklyn Nets Kevin Durant D'Angelo Russell (Photo by Matteo Marchi/Getty Images) /
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Brooklyn Nets
Brooklyn Nets Kevin Durant (Photo by Jane Tyska/MediaNews Group/The Mercury News via Getty Images) /

Scenario 1: Golden State wins the NBA championship

This scenario is the other side of the coin on Durant’s potential contributions to another Golden State title.

Scenario 1B: Warriors win without Durant playing a major role

The media scrutiny, peer pressure and social media response to Kevin Durant will probably gravitate to the narrative that Golden State doesn’t need him if they win without him. It could drive a wedge between Durant and the Warriors.

In that event, Durant could opt to leave Golden State if he feels the Warriors fans don’t appreciate him and the rest of the NBA doesn’t respect him. That is definitely a possibility but he’d still have three rings and be going for a fourth if he re-signs with Golden State.

It comes down to whether Durant really cares about what people think of him now contrasted with how he thinks he’ll be remembered historically. If hardware is all that matters to Durant he could stay in Golden State no matter what.

Even if his injury keeps him out for these finals he can return strong next year and the year after that, and be going for rings No. 4 and 5. Historically, do you really think Durant’s legacy would be tarnished because he missed a few games in one Finals win out of three or more due to injury?

Probably not.

However, if Durant’s emotions get the better of him, he could leave Golden State.

It’s important to note that Golden state can also offer Durant a fifth year on a maximum contract as well. Klay Thompson is also an unrestricted free agent, so Golden State will probably have to offer Thompson a maximum contract to keep him.

They’ll likely want to re-sign both players but it will be a huge hit to their cap and hurt their ability to deepen their bench, but they’d still be the opening favorites to win the NBA title next year if they keep Thompson and Durant.

Scenario 1 Takeaway: A Golden State title makes the likelihood of Durant re-signing with the Warriors extremely likely, especially if he is a major factor in the series. If he is injured and they still win Durant might look to leave.

Unfortunately, the Warriors are heavy favorites to win. A Warrior 3-peat makes KD’s chances of coming to Brooklyn slim. Brooklyn would have been better off in free agency pursuing Durant if Golden State was eliminated earlier.