Sportress of Blogitude

Warriors unlikely to explore delayed sign-and-trade with Kevin Durant

The big news in the NBA on Wednesday is that Kevin Durant, as expected, has declined his player option for next season with the Golden State Warriors and will become a free agent.

With that finally becoming official, the Durant sweepstakes will begin in earnest, and it sounds like the Warriors are no longer inclined to explore an unconventional means through which both the superstar and the team could mutually benefit.

A report surfaced last week indicating the Warriors were contemplating a delayed sign-and-trade to solve their Durant conundrum. According to The Athletic’s Anthony Slater, that option is no longer on the table.

“Early indications are the Warriors aren’t seriously exploring that convoluted path,” Slater writes. “Beyond possible CBA circumvention issues, it would be both absurdly expensive and internally awkward with only a future chance at slightly helpful assets. Translation: Not worth it.”

Further, it’s believed that if the Warriors do indeed sign Durant to a max deal that the team will fully expect him to play for them, though a trade down the road would remain a conceivable possibility.

“Things can go south quickly in this league,” Slater notes. “But if the Warriors get Durant back on his five-year max, it’d be with the initial expectation that his next game would be in their uniform, whenever that may be.”

Durant is still in New York nearly two weeks following surgery on his ruptured right Achilles tendon. The belief is the superstar is hunkering down with his agent exploring his options, that is when he’s not rolling around Manhattan with the aid of a knee scooter.

Despite Durant’s impending foray into free agency, his future remains as uncertain has it has been throughout the past season. Anything could potentially happen at this point, and as one league executive put it, the enigmatic superstar is likely to “change his mind at least 25 times before he actually” makes a decision.