Golden State pulled out all the stops this summer when they were pitching free agent Kevin Durant. Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, the coaching staff, ownership, they were all trying to convince Durant to leave the friendly confines of the Midwest and join them in the Bay Area. Draymond Green, a notoriously high-energy guy, said during an interview on Conan that he relentlessly contacted Durant before he signed his deal:
I recruited KD really hard. And it was like the equivalent of a college coach trying to get a top-five recruit – although I would’ve broke every NCAA rule there was, because I called him a million times. I texted him a million and one times. And I tried to show up wherever he was every chance I got.
Borderline stalker status, but it worked. Durant inked a two-year, $54.3 million contract on July 4, but Green went on to tell Conan that he wondered how KD felt about his vehement efforts:
When I found out he was coming, I came back to my senses, and I said, ‘I wonder if he respects me as a man now, the way I just blew his phone up.’ He had to have a girlfriend who got on his nerves worse than that before. So, I questioned myself.
It’s obvious why Green would take the recruiting as far as he did, and he’s now looked at as the difference maker between Durant signing or not. KD is coming off a year where he averaged 28.2 points on 50.5 percent shooting and a career-high 8.2 rebounds per night.
His decision to join the Warriors is suspect, but that’s a conversation for a different time. The former league MVP saw his Oklahoma City Thunder relinquish a 3-1 lead in the Western Conference Finals to the Warriors, and now he’s teaming up with the guys who beat him.
Regardless, Green’s admiration of Durant certainly played a role, possibly making KD feel like the Warriors sincerely wanted him on the roster. However, now that he’s there, the expectations are ten times as big, and a championship is expected to be brought back to the Bay sooner than later.
Stats courtesy of Basketball-Reference
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