Tuesday Bolts – 6.28.16
Kevin Pelton of ESPN Insider: “Depending on the free agents the team could sign for the minimum, Golden State could be perilously thin. Still, the possibility of staggering minutes to have either Curry or Durant on the floor at all times would be terrifying for opponents. And the cap math works out remarkably well for the Warriors, who could max out Durant, re-sign Curry and still have about $12 million left over next summer to re-sign Andre Iguodala and Livingston or find replacements. There are plenty of reasons Durant to Golden State might not happen, including how rare it would be for a superstar signing with the team that just beat his in the conference finals. Still, from a basketball standpoint, there’s no doubt the Warriors give Durant the best chance of success, both short-term and long-term.”
Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical: “I think that Oklahoma City remains the frontrunner – and I think a strong frontrunner. I’m told even if he left, he would do a one-year deal somewhere. Because economically, it makes sense for him to do a one-year deal and then do the longer deal after it. It’ll be worth more money because the cap goes up again next year. But Oklahoma City is a frontrunner. They’re a strong frontrunner.”
Nick Kyrgios does a Russ impression.
Michael Pina of Real GM explores Westbrook’s trade value: “The two key differences with that trade are: 1) Westbrook plays like an overly caffeinated sledgehammer while Ibaka may secretly be declining—and is not secretly no longer one of Oklahoma City’s three best players, and 2) Ibaka wanted out. As of right now, Westbrook does not want out. All these hypotheticals exist in a world where Durant is gone and Westbrook is unhappy—a reality we may never see. But pretending it happens, what packages can Presti fetch? As great as Westbrook is, only teams convinced they can re-sign him to a five-year max contract will get in on the bidding. Give up too much for a one-year rental and you look like the Brooklyn Nets.”
The Hawks want in on Durant too.
Russell Westbrook is on the cover of Adweek: “Honestly, I was always dressing like this. Our team obviously got better and got a lot more notoriety. And I think once they started seeing me more and more, they were like, “Oh, this guy has his own sense of style.” It’s something that I was always doing … I think some people just noticed it and it gave me a platform to use it and branch off into different things.”
Bill Simmons of The Ringer: “On July 1, Kevin Durant will become an unrestricted free agent. Most insiders believe that Durant will ink an extension with Oklahoma City, although rumors about Golden State, San Antonio, Boston and the Clippers keep swirling. Miami lurks as the darkest of horses, mainly because of Riley’s storied history of pulling off talent coups. He stole Tim Hardaway, Goran Dragic, and Shaquille O’Neal in separate deals for 50 cents on the dollar. He nearly stole Juwan Howard from Washington before David Stern vetoed Riley’s overly creative offer sheet. In the summer of 2010, he somehow convinced LeBron James, the league’s best player since Michael Jordan, to align with Dwyane Wade AND fellow free agent Chris Bosh.”