OAKLAND – As the chatter about Kevin Durant’s future rages on, the Warriors, player after player, as well as the coaching staff, insist it’s not a distraction.
Steve Kerr and Andre Iguodala expressed that sentiment over the weekend, and Klay Thompson echoed it on Wednesday.
“We’re handling it great,” he said after morning shootaround. “You can only control what you can control. You can’t listen to media coverage or speculation. There always will be speculation in any thing you do. It’s what we signed up for.”
That last sentence is straight from the book of Kerr, who in times stress cites the perks of being in the NBA fraternity by using the exact same phrase.
Iguodala’s response deviated slightly from that message, as he pointed to the experience the team’s core has gained being in the spotlight the past four seasons. While one team (the Lakers, for example) might crumble, the belief is the Warriors are built to handle the attention.
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Though Durant has been unusually distant for more than a week, the gossip and innuendo are “second nature” to the Warriors, according to Iguodala.
It comes with the territory, said Thompson.
“Thankfully, we’re well compensated for what we do,” he said. “We’re able to be traded on a whim. And especially as the trade deadline nears, it’s kind of nerve-wracking if you don’t know where you’re going to be.
“But it’s part of the business and not the first time you’ll go through it as a player.”