Will Warriors’ success push Kevin Durant closer to Knicks?
The Golden State Warriors made quick work of the Portland Trailblazers, completing a sweep on Monday night after a nailbiting Game 4 119-117 victory. It marks the fifth straight year that Golden State has made the NBA Finals, and the third time that they’ve done it without the help of Kevin Durant.
Although Durant is on the team, he’s been hurt over the last two weeks and hasn’t been able to play since the Warriors’ second round series against the Houston Rockets. This has allowed Steph Curry and Klay Thompson to play a more wide open style that’s both more high octane and fun. It’s not to say that the Warriors are a better team without Kevin Durant, but they’re a more fun team to watch.
The results have been the same and that notion of no Durant once again leaves both he and Knicks fans in an interesting predicament. From all accounts and rumors, Durant is looking to build his legacy when he hits free agency at the end of the season. It’s not about just winning a championship, it’s about doing it in a way where he’s heavily involved in the process.
If the Warriors keep winning championships without him, how can that really help with his legacy? Sure he’ll have a resume with three championships, but the Warriors made three Finals without him and won two without his services. What do his championships really mean if he wasn’t able to contribute?
The Warriors going all the way without Durant again is probably the best thing for Knicks fans. If Durant wants to build a legacy, there is no better place on Earth than Madison Square Garden to do so. It will be the ultimate challenge for Durant as he’ll have all the pressure in the world to deliver in front of the rabid fans of New York.
The Knicks haven’t won a championship since 1972-73 and truly haven’t been competitive in nearly a decade. Over the past 25 years there have been more dark times than success and there really haven’t been any players that have cemented their legacy as a Knick for life. The only ones that come to mind are Patrick Ewing, Charles Oakley and MAYBE Allan Houston, although his contract extension is one of the worst in franchise history.
Regardless, Durant has a chance to be THE man in New York and bring a championship to New York. If he can recruit any of the top free agents to the Knicks, they’ll be able to be at the least contenders in the East. With the right draft picks and supporting cast, the Knicks could have their best team since the mid 90’s. Will the allure of a New York championship bring Durant to the Knicks? The result of this year’s NBA Championship may hold that answer.