CJ McCollum Has an Unpopular Opinion on Kevin Durant’s Warriors Exit

Published 08/22/2021, 10:30 AM EDT
DENVER, CO – OCTOBER 21: Draymond Green (23) of the Golden State Warriors and Kevin Durant (35) question the referee after a defensive foul call against Green during the first half on Sunday, October 21, 2018. The Denver Nuggets hosted the Golden State Warriors at the Pepsi Center in Denver. (Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post via Getty Images)


The Golden State Warriors just don’t have the dream team they did a couple of years ago. When entering October 2018, the Dubs were the most dominant team in the league, with four NBA finals appearances and two championships. In fact, fans wonder if the Warriors’ legacy could have been much bigger, had Kevin Durant stayed with them.

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So, why didn’t he? While most think his right with his then-teammate Draymond Green was the biggest reason, CJ McCollum explained that it was much bigger than that.

Beef with Draymond Green got worse because of media

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On Pull Up by CJ McCollum, he recalled everything he could remember about the Kevin Durant and Draymond Green drama. He explained that there was a lot that was at play, which made the situation more complicated, which eventually lead to his exit. But then he said, “The argument didn’t help, and the way they handled it probably didn’t help.

May 11, 2021; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) celebrates against the Phoenix Suns during the fourth quarter at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

“But also the media, the way they portrayed everything. The way they had to ask about it and watch how that relationship and dynamic would continue after that, played a factor.”

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Kevin Durant could have stayed if he wanted

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However, McCollum also confessed that Durant isn’t the one to be forced to leave. He explained, “At the end of the day, KD is the type of a guy that if he wanted to stay, he would have stayed. His actions In previous situations, and on previous teams that he probably felt like his time was up there. He had been there for a long time, he had won multiple championships, he had won multiple finals MVPs, he kind of got what he was looking for.

“In the sense of playing on arguably one of the best teams ever created. Being able to learn a different style, being able to play a different style. I think he went in there an elite player, he left an elite player who understood the game better, who was a better all-around player from a defensive standpoint, to an offensive standpoint, to a creativity standpoint to a guy who can kind of orchestrate offense, manipulate a defense, yeah he stopped. But I think he took it to another level after he played alongside Steph, Dre, Klay.”

Apr 25, 2021; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) looks up after getting fouled in the fourth quarter against the Phoenix Suns at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Of course, this is all just from CJ’s viewpoint. Recently, KD and Green sat down for Draymond’s podcast and cleared the air about their entire situation. All the inside dirt is available after so many years. But for them to be able to sit together also means that if those two have left all that behind, everyone else should too. Don’t you agree?

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DIVE DEEPER

“Hate Me More Than I Liked”: Kevin Durant Opens Up About His Rocky Relationship With the Media

about 1 month ago

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Yashima Bhatia

1478 articles

Yashima Bhatia is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports who specialises in providing nuanced predictions and updates for matches. She has a Bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Yashima's love for playing the game came up at a young age, when the excitement of the games coupled with the intensity of the Playoffs had her hooked.

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