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NBA Rumors: OKC Kevin Durant Causes Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson Rift; Splash Brothers fight Over Russell Westbrook Partner

( [email protected] ) Feb 25, 2016 09:34 AM EST
The basketball community is bursting at the seems with the excitement as the free agent market will be full of promising players after the NBA season. One of the most widely speculated future free agent is none other All-Star Kevin Durant. The Oklahoma City Thunder star, who has been the face of the franchise alonside Russell Westbrook, is reportedly set to earn what could be the highest salary in the NBA to date once he hits free agency. The teams interested to sign Durant include the Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, Houston Rockets, Sacramento Kings and San Antonio Spurs.
Feb 24, 2016; Dallas, TX, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant (35) leads a fast break in the second half against the Dallas Mavericks at American Airlines Center. The Thunder beat the Mavs 116-103. Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The basketball community is bursting at the seems with the excitement as the free agent market will be full of promising players after the NBA season. One of the most widely speculated future free agents is none other All-Star Kevin Durant. The Oklahoma City Thunder star, who has been the face of the franchise alongside Russell Westbrook, is reportedly set to earn what could be the highest salary in the NBA to date once he hits free agency. The teams interested to sign Durant include the Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, Houston Rockets, Sacramento Kings and San Antonio Spurs.

However, the strongest contenders in the whole NBA free agency discussion involving Durant are the Golden State Warriors. While the Oklahoma City Thunder star remains mum on the issue, some sources disclosed that the possibility of his entry in the Draymond Green squad is already causing a divide among the reigning NBA champs. Moreover, some feel that Durant would be better off carrying another team to the championship compared with riding off with the current champions.

According to Tom Carpenter of ESPN, the entry of Durant in the Golden State Warriors roster will mostly affect Klay Thompson. The other half of the famed Splash Brothers, while remarkable in the hardwood court, offers the same skill set as the Oklahoma City Thunder star. Given the two stars' record, there is no question of who the Harrison Barnes team will opt for in the future.

"The biggest fantasy downside would come to Thompson," said Carpenter. He added, "He would have to take a significant hit in his usage rate with Durant capable of doing everything he does, but better. He has been averaging more than 18 field goal attempts in the past two months, which would not be remotely reasonable if he were playing alongside Durant."

Curry, who has been carrying the Golden State Warriors this NBA season, will be granted the opportunity to take some nights off or at least get lesser minutes once Durant enters the team. Green will also benefit from the Oklahoma City Thunder star as he would be able to clear more space to make plays. In the end, it would Thompson who will need to make a sacrifice for the development of the squad.

However, no official statements have been released by both parties. Curry was earlier asked in an ESPN interview of the possibility of Durant's entry in the roster. He said, "Not in those terms. I hear that stuff, and it's human nature to be interested in it. I'm very comfortable with our team."

Curry added, "In the NBA, you're never immune to rumors and trade rumors, and free agency stuff. That's a good lesson for us: No matter if you're 44-4, or 4-44, it's always gonna be a topic of conversation. We can't control any of that. We can only control how strong we are as a group. The NBA is so fluid. We just want to enjoy what's going on right now, instead of talking about what might be."

Tags : NBA, NBA rumors, Kevin Durant, OKC, Oklahoma City Thunder, Golden State Warriors, Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson