Warriors

Bob Myers: Kevin Durant's next deal is 'whatever he wants'

Bob Myers: Kevin Durant's next deal is 'whatever he wants'

PROGRAMMING NOTE: Coverage of the Warriors 2018 Championship Parade begins Tuesday at 9:30am on NBC Sports Bay Area and streaming on NBCSportsBayArea.com.

OAKLAND -- Kevin Durant has been saying for months that his plan is to re-sign with the Warriors, with only the fine-print details to be determined.

Those details, according to Warriors general manager Bob Myers, will basically be whatever Durant dictates.

“Whatever he wants,” Myers said Monday. “I’d love to have him for 10 years.”

In short, the blueprint that was available to Stephen Curry last summer, resulting in him signing a maximum deal worth $201 million over five years, will soon be placed in front of Durant. The Curry deal was not a negotiation but a conversation.

“Whatever he wants,” Myers repeated of Durant. “Sometimes you don’t negotiate."

This is precisely the situation Durant desired when he signed a two-year contract worth $51.25 million, with an opt-out clause, last July. He wanted to the flexibility to re-sign while also setting the number of years he would be committed.

In two seasons with the Warriors, Durant has picked up the first two championship rings of his 10-year career. Moreover, he is the back-to-back NBA Finals MVP.

In Game 3 of the 2018 Finals, with most of his teammates struggling to produce offense, Durant scored 43 points -- more than fellow starters Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, JaVale McGee and Curry combined.

“Kevin Durant, look what he did for us last year,” Myers said. “He did us a great service, so he’s earned the right to sign whatever deal he wants. I just want him to sign a deal. But I want him to be happy and I want him to know that we want him as long as he wants to be here. He’s earned that, to kind of lay out the terms.”

Dictating the terms worked well for Curry and his agent, Jeff Austin. There is every expectation, whether it’s for two years or longer, that it will work just as well for Durant and his agent, Rick Kleiman. 

Warriors vs. Mavericks watch guide: Lineups, injury report, player usage

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Warriors vs. Mavericks watch guide: Lineups, injury report, player usage

OAKLAND – On Saturday afternoon, for one final time, Dirk Nowitzki will return to the scene of the crime.

Back in April 2007, Nowitzki was assaulted in public, right there on the floor of Oracle Arena. He and his Dallas Mavericks teammates were roughed up and kicked completely out of the playoffs by a marauding band of Warriors with more heart and fight than size and might.

Nearly 12 years later, Nowitzki will be making his final appearance at Oracle when the Mavericks, already eliminated from the playoffs, come upon the Warriors, who lead the Western Conference and stand 21.5 games ahead of Dallas in the standings.

Coverage on NBC Sports Bay Area begins at 4 o’clock with Warriors Outsiders, followed by Warriors Pregame at 4:30, with tipoff scheduled for 5:30.

[RELATED: How to watch Mavericks-Warriors online and on MyTeams app]

Whereas the 2006-07 Warriors achieved one of the greatest upsets in NBA playoffs history, ousting top-seed Dallas with a 111-86 rout in Game 6 at Oracle, the current Warriors are heavily favored to not only beat the Mavericks but also make a fifth consecutive trip to The Finals.

The Warriors (49-22) have won four of their last five games and are showing signs of peaking for a postseason that begins in exactly three weeks, which half explains why Stephen Curry has been given a “rest night.”

The other half of the explanation is that Mavericks (28-44) are bound for the lottery, which isn’t the most fitting farewell for Nowitzki, who turns 41 in June and is expected to retire. Rookie sensation Luka Doncic is poised to inherit the torch in Dallas.

In any case, with the Warriors bound for Chase Center in October, it’s Dirk’s last dance at Oracle.

 

PROJECTED LINEUPS

Warriors

F – Kevin Durant F – Draymond Green C – DeMarcus Cousins G – Klay Thompson G – Quinn Cook

Mavericks

F – Justin Jackson F – Maxi Kleber C – Dwight Powell G – Jalen Brunson G – Luka Doncic

 

INJURY REPORT

Warriors: C Andrew Bogut (rest), G Stephen Curry (rest), C Damian Jones (L pectoral surgery) and G Shaun Livingston (rest) are listed as out.

Mavericks: G J.J. Barea (R Achilles’ tendon surgery), Tim Hardaway Jr. (L tibia stress reaction) and F Kristaps Porzingis (L knee surgery rehab) are listed as out.

 

ROTATION OUTLOOK

Warriors: With Curry out, Cook is the most likely starter at PG. Kerr likes the idea of having at least three shooters on the floor and Cook qualifies. Starting him also would maintain the integrity of the rotation. It’s conceivable that rookie Jacob Evans III, summoned from Santa Cruz, could get a few minutes . . . Coach Steve Kerr’s decision to rest two PGs (Livingston being the other) is risky, as it leaves Andre Iguodala as the secondary playmaker. If Cook gets into foul trouble, Iguodala’s minutes could rise . . . With Bogut out, Kevon Looney and Jordan Bell likely will share minutes behind Cousins at C. PF Jonas Jerebko could see time at both PF and C . . . Durant is two 3-pointers away from surpassing Glen Rice (1,559) and moving into 25th place on the all-time list of triples . . . The Warriors have won 12 in a row over the Mavericks at Oracle.

Mavericks: Nowitzki is averaging 13.7 minutes per game and has exceeded 20 only once since March 2 . . . Doncic has won all four Rookie of the Month awards this season, making him the front-runner to be named Rookie of the Year . . . Now three weeks past his 20th birthday, he is showing signs of fatigue. He’s shot 37.8 percent, 23.1 percent from deep, over the past 10 games. His season percentages are 42.6 and 33.3 . . . Brunson, a rookie from Villanova, has four games with at least 20 points since the Feb. 14-20 All-Star break. He’s averaging 15.7 ppg and 30.3 mpg during since then . . . Powell also has benefitted from the post-break youth movement. His mpg have nearly doubled (18.5 to 32.2) as have his ppg (8.7 to 15.7) . . . The Warriors benefit from the absence of Barea, who has a tendency to play particularly well against them.

Officials: Eric Lewis (chief), Mark Ayotte, Matt Boland. 

LeBron James, Lakers' preseason predictions were incredibly wrong

LeBron James, Lakers' preseason predictions were incredibly wrong

The Los Angeles Lakers were eliminated from playoff contention after losing to the Brooklyn Nets on Friday night. For the first time since the 2004-05 season, LeBron will not be in the playoffs.

When James signed with the Lakers during the offseason, most people found themselves on one of two ends of the Hot Take Meter.

You were either on the side of “LeBron is the best in the world and won’t have any issues in the West," or you were the side of “LeBron only had success because he was in the East, and can’t repeat it in the West.”

There wasn’t much of a middle ground, nor is there ever in the era of morning debate shows and Twitter rants.

For analysts Stephen A. Smith, Chris Broussard, Nick Wright and others on the end of “LeBron is the best, he won’t have a problem,” well … they were wrong. 

By a lot.

Of course, any time someone has a hot take, there’s only one of two ways it can end up. You’re either going to be spot on, or you're going to be dead wrong.

The funny part is just how wrong they all were.

“Wake me when a LeBron James team doesn’t win 50 games,” said Wright.

Someone please wake up Nick, because the Lakers can’t sniff 50 wins. They currently sit at 31 wins with just nine games left.

Not only did Smith and Broussard predict the Lakers would win at least 50 games as well, but they also said LeBron would win MVP.

That’s not happening either. James hasn’t even been in that conversation for most of the year, ever since the Lakers' season started spiraling after he injured his groin Christmas Day against the Warriors.

“The Lakers are going to the Western Conference Finals, for sure,” predicted comedian Michael Rapaport, a frequent guest on Fox Sports 1’s Undisputed.

Any dream of LeBron vs. the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals is going to have to wait at least until next season, presumably after LeBron rebuilds the entire Lakers roster. 

The Warriors, despite a somewhat tumultuous season, have held onto their perch atop the Western Conference. While their rival Lakers have completely imploded, the Dubs sit at the No. 1 seed in the West and are heavily favored to three-peat as NBA Champions. 

[RELATED: Draymond makes bold prediction about Dubs in Chase Center]

While the Warriors run to another title has been predictable, the Lakers' collapse has, admittedly, been stunning.

But that’s the business most of these guys are in. They get paid to give their hot takes. They’re going to miss on some predictions and hit on others. These were all predictions at the beginning of the season and obviously changed as the Lakers rough season progressed.

We could have shown all the people who predicted the Lakers fate correctly, but what fun would that be?