Kevin Durant will sign with the Warriors, he announced on The Players’ Tribune.
According to ESPN’s Marc Stein, Durant will sign a two-year, $54.3 million deal with a player option in the second year.
Durant, a 27-year-old former MVP and four-time NBA scoring champion, was the top free agent on the market. He held meetings with the Thunder, Warriors, Clippers, Spurs, Celtics and Heat before circling back to meet with Oklahoma City again on Sunday. He turned down invitations to meet with the Knicks and his hometown Wizards, among others.
“The primary mandate I had for myself in making this decision was to have it based on the potential for my growth as a player — as that has always steered me in the right direction,” Durant wrote. “But I am also at a point in my life where it is of equal importance to find an opportunity that encourages my evolution as a man: moving out of my comfort zone to a new city and community which offers the greatest potential for my contribution and personal growth. With this in mind, I have decided that I am going to join the Golden State Warriors.”
On Sunday afternoon, after completing all of his meetings, Durant’s decision seemed to be down to the Warriors, Celtics and Thunder. He reportedly spoke with Golden State executive Jerry West over the phone, then mulled a change of scenery.
After the decision was announced, the Thunder released a statement thanking Durant for his time with the franchise
Durant’s move to Golden State likely marks the end of Harrison Barnes’s time in the Bay Area; Dallas reportedly agreed to a max offer sheet with Barnes on Saturday, and with a new wing in town, the Warriors likely will not match.
The star forward has played his entire nine-year career with Oklahoma City, and has helped lead the Thunder to six playoff appearances in the last seven seasons. He holds career averages of 27.4 points and 7.0 rebounds per game, and has been named to seven consecutive All-Star teams.
– Kenny Ducey