Warriors

Waiting could serve Warriors well in free agency

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Waiting could serve Warriors well in free agency

While many NBA teamshave been busily trying to reach agreements with free agents, the Warriors havebeen quiet. Actually, some might suggest theyve been more than quiet. Somemight suggest dormant.Outside of missingout on Brandon Roy, it doesnt seem like the Warriors have been in onmuch.But its not thetime to panic.First of all, theWarriors were never going to be a player for the big names. They just donthave that much money to spend somewhere in the 3 to 4 million range,according to GM Bob Myers.But theres anotherreason Warriors fans shouldnt fret about their teams inactivity. Because nowis when the big mistakes are made.In other words, ifyoure not in the game at this point, you cant make the kind of monstermistake that can set your franchise back. On one level, it makes perfect sensefor the Warriors to hold tight right now, and wait for the going rates ofplayers to come down a little bit.Thats what usuallyhappens as free agency continues and more and more money dries up.Here are some dealsthat down the line may prove to be costly blunders:Omer Asik,three-year offer sheet with Houston worth 25 million: Look, Asik isintriguing, no doubt. But he played 14 minutes a game last year, averaging 3.1points and 5.3 rebounds per game. He hasnt proven hes an NBA starter yet, forcrying out loud.JamalCrawford, four-year deal with L.A. Clippers worth 25 million: Thelast two years of this deal dont appear to be guaranteed, but still. Thats alot of money for Crawford, who has become mostly a sparkplug off thebench.GeraldWallace, four-year deal with Brooklyn worth 40 million: Wow. Hey,Wallace plays hard, and hes a nice piece. But 10 million per season isridiculous for him. Then again, money is no object in Brooklyn so whats it toyou?Jeremy Lin,four-year offer sheet with Houston worth 29 million: Few NBA playershave burst onto the scene out of nowhere like Lin did last year. Still, whenyou strip away all the hype and all the buzz, is Lin capable of being astarting point guard on a very good team? We dont know the answer to that. Butif he cant be, then youre spending an average of more than 7 million per seasonon a backup. Risky.MichaelBeasley, three-year deal with Phoenix for 18 million: Youve got tobe kidding me.GoranDragic, four-year offer sheet with Phoenix for 34 million: Didntthe Suns just trade Dragic for Aaron Brooks a little over a year ago? And nowthey want him back at more than 8 million per year. Yikes!EricGordon, four-year offer sheet with Phoenix worth 58 million: Hey,Gordon is a pretty good player, but is he a 15 million per year player? Thatseems awfully high for an undersized two guard who is coming off injury and whohas never been much of a defender.But the bigger pointis this: If Phoenix executes its plan, it will have spent 110 million onGordon, Dragic and Beasley. As Ernest Hemingway would say: Somecore.NicolasBatum, four-year offer sheet with Minnesota worth approximately 45 to 50million: Batum is a heck of a defensive player, but his offense needswork. Hes an improving player, no doubt. But were talking about a contracthere worth between 11 million and 13 million a year. Be glad your teamdoesnt want to pony up that kind of money for that kind of player.LandryFields, three-year offer sheet with Toronto worth 19 million: Landryis a role player, a glue guy, if you will. Lots of teams would love to have him but not at 6-plus million per season.

Bravo For Durant: No White House visit proves he has a set of principles

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AP

Bravo For Durant: No White House visit proves he has a set of principles

Though the Warriors have yet to receive an invitation to visit the White House in the wake of their championship season, one of their superstars already has decided he would not participate.

Kevin Durant, the NBA Finals MVP who grew up practically in the shadow of the White House, said he would not visit.

"Nah, I won't do that," Durant told ESPN on Thursday. "I don't respect who's in office right now."

Bravo for Durant. For speaking up when so many others are silent and, by acknowledging that this is an individual decision, proving he is willing to stand on a personal set of principles.

Visiting his hometown of Seat Pleasant, Md. for “Kevin Durant Day,” the forward didn’t mention President Donald Trump by name but made clear his disdain for the man who currently occupies the White House.

"I don't agree with what he agrees with, so my voice is going to be heard by not doing that," Durant said. "That's just me personally, but if I know my guys well enough, they'll all agree with me."

Durant is not the first Warrior to publicly express such sentiments. Stephen Curry, Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston have specifically said they would not be willing to make the visit that has become customary for American championship teams. Coach Steve Kerr and veteran forward David West have been vocal in denouncing Trump’s discriminatory rhetoric and boorish behavior.

Uncertain whether an invitation is forthcoming, the Warriors issued a statement in June saying any collective decision regarding a White House visit would be made “when and if necessary.”

Their championship season ended two months ago. Training camp for next season begins next month. There has been no invitation.

Durant’s comments Thursday represent his first that directly address the possibility of visiting the White House. The Warriors, after their 2105 championship, made the visit when Barack Obama was president.

"I just wanted to sit back and analyze everything and gather my thoughts," he told ESPN. "I wanted to say something immediately, but I definitely want to be the voice of where I come from and people who have come from my neighborhood and deal with oppression.”

Addressing the division that has infected the national landscape, Durant pointed directly at Trump.

"He's definitely driving it," Durant said. "I feel ever since he's got into office, or since he ran for the presidency, our country has been so divided and it's not a coincidence. When Obama was in office, things were looking up. We had so much hope in our communities where I come from because we had a black president, and that was a first.

"So, to see that, and to be where we are now, it just felt like we took a turn for the worse, man. It all comes from who is in the administration. It comes from the top -- leadership trickles down to the rest of us. So, you know, if we have someone in office that doesn't care about all people, then we won't go anywhere as a country. In my opinion, until we get him out of here, we won't see any progress."

Though not all Warriors have publicly commented on the subject, Durant’s hunch is accurate. This team has a collective conscience. There are causes in which every member believes, and two such causes are equality and inclusiveness.

Those alone are enough to ensure they would not splinter on this issue.

Kevin Durant doesn't respect Donald Trump: 'Until we get him out of here...'

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AP

Kevin Durant doesn't respect Donald Trump: 'Until we get him out of here...'

If the Warriors get invited to the White House and accept, will Kevin Durant attend?

"Nah, I won't do that," the 2017 NBA Finals MVP told ESPN's Chris Haynes on Thursday. "I don't respect who's in office right now.

"I don't agree with what he agrees with, so my voice is going to be heard by not doing that. That's just me personally, but if I know my guys well enough, they'll all agree with me."

The Warriors are scheduled to play the Wizards in Washington D.C. on Feb. 28 (which happens to be the same date of last season's game in D.C. when Durant injured his knee).

On Monday, Steve Kerr provided an update.

"We have talked as an organization about a potential White House invitation and what that would mean," he told Damon Bruce of 95.7 The Game. "A couple weeks ago we decided let's get the players together and talk about it later this summer when we can -- just before Media Day probably.

"And we'll do that, and I'll just leave it at that."

Durant -- who is from Maryland -- was in his hometown of Seat Pleasant on Thursday to celebrate "Kevin Durant Day."

He didn't hold back when discussing Donald Trump.

"I feel ever since he's got into office, or since he ran for the presidency, our country has been so divided and it's not a coincidence. When Obama was in office, things were looking up. We had so much hope in our communities where I come from because we had a black President, and that was a first.

"So, to see that, and to be where we are now, it just felt like we took a turn for the worse, man. It all comes from who is in the administration. It comes from the top -- leadership trickles down to the rest of us.

"So, you know, if we have someone in office that doesn't care about all people, then we won't go anywhere as a country. In my opinion, until we get him out of here, we won't see any progress."

Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller