NBA rumors: Kevin Durant could leave Warriors due to Steve Kerr's 'prodding'

NBA rumors: Kevin Durant could leave Warriors due to Steve Kerr's 'prodding'

It's been almost two weeks since we've seen Kevin Durant on a basketball court and it's unlikely we see the Warriors star again until the start of the 2019 NBA Finals

With Durant rehabbing his right calf strain while the Warriors handle the Portland Trail Blazers in the Western Conference finals, it's time to go back to focusing on KD's future and the possibility that he leaves the Bay for the New York Knicks.

Most wonder why Durant, who has won back-to-back NBA Finals MVP awards with the Warriors, would want to leave a team as set up for continued success as Golden State is, especially for an organization as dysfunctional as the Knicks. 

There have been a number of reasons bandied about for why Durant -- should he choose to opt out of his contract this summer -- might want to see his time in the Bay come to an end.

The latest whispers involve Steve Kerr.

While at the NBA Scouting Combine, Newsday's Steve Popper reportedly spoke to an NBA executive who revealed that he's heard Durant has become annoyed with Kerr's coaching style and also wants to leave because he will never be "the centerpiece" of the team. That, of course, is Steph Curry. 

via Popper:

But one front office executive said that Durant has been unhappy with the prodding from Steve Kerr and the feeling that he never can be — no matter how great he performs and how many individual honors he compiles — the centerpiece of a team that holds Steph Curry in the hearts of the franchise.

Sounds like the Master of Whispers has been working overtime in the NBA.

Perhaps Lord Varys wasn't actually burnt to a crisp, but rather just had to leave Westeros in order to run the Kevin Durant rumor mill, which is working overtime at the moment.

[RELATED: KD to Knicks reportedly is '100 percent done,' veteran NBA players says]

As for Durant's reported jealousy of Curry and issues with Kerr's coaching, only KD knows the answer to that.

There have been no real signs of issues between the Warriors' two superstars, and Durant, by all accounts, is the type of player who wants to be coached hard because he wants to play basketball at his highest possible level.

So this is most likely just a whisperer passing on whispers he's heard along the way.

Should KD head for the Big Apple this summer, it seems unlikely these are the reasons for his departure.

NBA rumors: Warriors' Kevon Looney possible Rockets free-agent target

NBA rumors: Warriors' Kevon Looney possible Rockets free-agent target

Warriors big man Kevon Looney will become an unrestricted free agent on Sunday. And unlike last summer, Golden State will have to give the 23-year-old more than the minimum to re-sign him.

There will be a market for Looney, and the Houston Rockets are expected to be a suitor.

As Sam Amick of The Athletic wrote on Tuesday night:

As it stands, [the Rockets] have no cap room and are limited to the midlevel exception (annual salary starting at $5.7 million).

A source with knowledge of the Rockets’ plans said Danny Green, Jeremy Lamb, Al-Farouq Aminu, DeAndre Jordan, Brook Lopez and Kevon Looney are also possible targets.

The Dubs have Looney's full bird rights and can give him a max contract if they wanted. That obviously won't be happening, but the point is they aren't limited financially in terms of what they can offer like they were last summer.

In Golden State's memorable Game 6 win in Houston last month, Looney recorded 14 points, five rebounds, one assist, one steal and one block in 20 minutes.

The No. 30 overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft sustained a non-displaced first costal cartilage fracture on the right side of his chest during Game 2 of the Finals in Toronto. His expected recovery time is six to eight weeks, which means Looney should be at full strength when training camp opens up in late September.

You should expect the Warriors to make it a priority to re-sign him.

“Looney has become one of our foundational pieces," Golden State head coach Steve Kerr told reporters on May 22.

And now, they're going to have to show him the money.

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Kevin Durant all smiles roaming around New York after Achilles surgery


Kevin Durant all smiles roaming around New York after Achilles surgery

Kevin Durant isn't expected to play in any NBA games next season, but he's not letting that dampen his mood.

Nearly two weeks after having surgery to repair his right Achilles tendon, Durant is up and roaming around New York City with the assistance of a knee walker.

View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Tony Durant (@tdurant) on

Tony Durant, Kevin's brother, posted that image Tuesday evening of them walking around SoHo.

Immediately after the Golden State Warriors lost to the Toronto Raptors in the 2019 NBA Finals, Durant flew to New York City and had Dr. Martin O'Malley perform the Achilles surgery.

With the start of free agency just days away, rumors have started swirling about Durant's mindset as he approaches his big decision.

On Monday, Bleacher Report's Ric Bucher reported that Durant was "pissed" with the Warriors for their role in his injury. But a day later, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that there is no such rift between Durant and the Warriors.

[RELATED: Two teams have backed off Durant]

Based on the new image, Durant appears to be in good spirits.

We'll find out in the next few days if Durant will bring that smile back to the Bay Area for the next five years, or if it will stay in New York City for the next four.