Warriors

NBA rumors: Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving planned vacation pre-Achilles tear

NBA rumors: Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving planned vacation pre-Achilles tear

Today is a day that ends in "y" so that means a new piece of information involving Warriors superstar Kevin Durant's pending free agency has come to light.

Frank Isola of The Athletic has the details:

Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, according to a league source, were planning a vacation at the end of the season; a quick getaway to spend quality time together and map out their respective futures.

Those plans – as well as the entire 2019-20 NBA season, really – changed dramatically when Durant’s Achilles ruptured in Game 5 of the NBA Finals. 

First, KD and Kyrie are close friends, and it's completely normal for friends to vacation together.

Second, this doesn't mean they were going to end up agreeing to sign with the same team this summer.

Recent reports have indicated that Kyrie is very much planning on joining the Nets and that he is trying to get the two-time NBA Finals MVP to go with him.

But on Wednesday night, Brian Lewis of The New York Post reported that Brooklyn is having an internal debate about whether to sign Kyrie if Durant doesn't want to play for the Nets.

You would think that information like this would only surface if the Nets believed KD was going elsewhere. Otherwise, why would it leak out?

The Warriors reportedly are planning to offer the 10-time All-Star a max deal worth about $220 million over five seasons. But they might not be the team that pays him the majority of that money.

As ESPN's Brian Windhorst said Thursday morning on "Get Up!":

"The Durant situation is still in flux. One of the things that is being discussed right now is that the Golden State Warriors would offer Kevin Durant a five-year contract -- $57 million more than he could get signing elsewhere -- let him rehab, and then work with him to be traded, potentially to New York, potentially to somewhere else.

"It would be there a way to sort of take care of him monetarily after what he just went through and also protect the franchise to get some assets."

[RELATEDMyers says Klay hasn't had surgery yet on his torn ACL]

Windhorst did not say that this is what KD has asked of the Warriors. This could just be something that Golden State offers Durant if he tells them that he is going to sign with another franchise.

The situation is very fluid and this all might be old news by the time you're reading this.

Perhaps you should just go on a vacation for three weeks and then see where the dust settles...

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Warriors' Steph Curry participates in drills, inching closer to return

currypracticeusatsi.jpg
USATSI

Warriors' Steph Curry participates in drills, inching closer to return

SAN FRANCISCO -- After a full month of increasingly intense individual workouts, Stephen Curry on Tuesday joined his Warriors teammates on the practice court for the first time since last October.

That wasn’t quite enough for Curry, though, as he then stayed behind for individual shooting drills after most of the Warriors had wrapped up their sessions and headed for the showers.

The only indication that Curry’s return is not imminent was his attire. He was the only player wearing a red jersey, signifying “no contact” status.

“We were calling him Tom Brady today,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said after the team’s first practice after the All-Star break. “Don’t touch Steph.”

“But he took part in everything, other than our scrimmage. We scrimmaged at the end, and he didn’t do that. But he took part in everything else and he’s looking great.”

Though there is no official date for Curry’s return -- he underwent surgery to repair a fracture of the second metacarpal of his left hand -- the Warriors are scheduled to issue an update on March 1. If all goes well, it’s conceivable Curry would immediately begin scrimmaging, with a possible return a few days later.

Asked about Klay Thompson’s status, Kerr indicated he’s not expecting Curry’s sidekick to return this season.

“With Steph, there’s a definite timetable,” Kerr said. “It’s easy to look and say that in a couple weeks, Steph is going to be ready to play. I don’t know exactly what day.

“But Klay is a long way from that. I don’t even entertain any thoughts of Klay playing this year.”

While Thompson is rehabbing a surgically repaired torn ACL, which often requires a year or more before making a full recovery, Curry met all recovery benchmarks in the wake of fracturing his left hand on Oct. 30.

Curry was able to participate in defensive drills, skill work and some offensive scripting, Kerr said. He will be limited Wednesday when the team goes through its next practice.

The last step for Curry will be to endure one or two live scrimmages.

“I don’t know when he’s going to be allowed to scrimmage,” Kerr said. “It’s not this week or anything. But he looks really good. He’s gaining strength, gaining confidence. He has been putting himself through some brutal workouts, so his conditioning is about as good as it can possibly be for somebody who hasn’t been able to scrimmage.”

There has been a measure of debate within the NBA community about whether it’s wise for Curry to return to a team bound for the draft lottery. Kerr is focused on the obvious benefits, even if it’s 15 to 20 games.

“It’s going to be a different role for him,” he said. “He only got three games before his injury. It’s important for him to feel the difference. It feels different for us. With all these young guys we’re trying to teach them on the fly, a lot of things that we’ve taken for granted over the last five years, we can’t take for granted anymore. Steph needs to feel that.”

[RELATED: Light years 2.0: Lacob says Dubs 're-imagining the dynasty']

The Warriors have 27 games remaining. After March 1, that number drops to 21. Their final 20 begins with a four-game homestand from March 5 to March 12. Assuming there are no setbacks, it’s likely Curry will return during that stretch.

Warriors 're-imagining the dynasty' during down season, Joe Lacob says

Warriors 're-imagining the dynasty' during down season, Joe Lacob says

The Warriors, with their 12-43 record, are behind every team in the NBA this season. But team owner Joe Lacob still is finding ways to be "light years ahead" again. 

While Golden State is hoping to win every game, Lacob admits the front office has a lot of focus on free agency and the NBA draft. After five straight trips to the Finals, the Dubs are looking at a top draft pick this June. 

It won't be this year, but Lacob and the rest of the Warriors have their eyes on the Larry O'Brien Trophy in the very near future

“The great thing about this is we can re-imagine the next dynasty,” owner Joe Lacob told USA TODAY Sports during the NBA’s Tech Summit during All-Star weekend. “I think it’s been a good year for us to take stock with where we’re at and try to recreate.”

The Warriors traded six players before this year's NBA trade deadline. They also acquired four future second-round draft picks and a top-three protected first-round pick in 2021. Golden State's headline move was trading guard D'Angelo Russell to the Minnesota Timberwolves for small forward Andrew Wiggins. 

But the cherry on top for Lacob was the 2021 pick the Warriors received from Minnesota.

"We already had a high pick in 2020 and it's not considered the greatest draft," Lacob explained to NBC Sports Bay Area's Greg Papa during Warriors Pregame Live on Feb. 10. "But 2021, considered a very good draft. So, that was the key. It wasn't about multiple picks. It was about that pick."

[RELATED: Kerr laughs off Warriors' ugly season with funny tweet]

The Warriors will have a high draft pick this year and likely another valuable one from the T-Wolves next year. Steph Curry and Klay Thompson both will be healthy to join Wiggins and Draymond Green again as well next season.

Much of this season is a mirage of what the Warriors will put on the floor at Chase Center in a few months. Every dynasty takes a break.

Rarely can a new one arise this quickly, but Lacob sure will try.