Kevin Durant Admits Draymond Green Incident Factored in His Warriors Exit

Warriors fans always will remember Kevin Durant's time with their team. They'll remember the two NBA championships and three consecutive trips to the Finals.

They'll also remember Nov. 12, 2018.

That was the date of a 121-116 overtime loss to the Clippers that dropped the Warriors to 11-3 on the season. And while the 14th game of the season typically doesn't make or break a team, in this case, it might have broken a dynasty.

Kevin Durant and Draymond Green got into a verbal altercation on the Warriors' bench at the end of regulation after Green decided to attempt a potential game-winning shot instead of passing the ball to Durant. Sources told NBC Sports Bay Area's Monte Poole one day later that Green crossed the line by bringing up KD's impending free agency. Warriors general manager Bob Myers and coach Steve Kerr even decided to suspend Green without pay for one game. 

On Thursday, Durant, who left the Warriors to sign with the Nets in free agency, spoke on the significance of his incident with his former teammate.

"A little bit, yeah. For sure," Durant said on ESPN's "First Take" when asked if the altercation played a role in him leaving Golden State. "When your teammate talks to you that way, you think about it a bit. ... Definitely, for sure. I'm not gonna lie about it."

Green initially resented the Warriors' decision to suspend him. He felt the front office had taken KD's side and, in return, betrayed someone who had won three championships for them.

What bothered Green the most, however, was knowing he put an ugly stain on his relationship with Durant.

"The thing that bothered me most was I lost his trust," Green said on "The Woj Pod" on Oct. 23. "How do I get that back? Not so we can win a championship or we can win some games -- but I actually loved this guy, that's really my brother. And so not knowing what's next in our relationship bothered me way more."

When Durant expounded on the squabble Thursday, he said the verbal fight played right into all the outside noise surrounding the Warriors. It was the last thing they needed as a team.

And he's not wrong. The Warriors were one of the most-watched and scrutinized sports teams ever. Any crack in the armor was catnip for their critics.

"Yeah, I wish that wouldn't have happened," Durant said. "I feel like that was a situation that definitely could have been avoided. It really came out of nowhere. For us, everybody was just looking for something to tear us down with, and I think they used that. ... It opened up a lot of nonsense.

"I think it could have been avoided, and me and Draymond talked about it."

[RELATED: Steph suffering broken hand was 'tough' for KD to see]

The past is the past. The Warriors now live in a reality where Kevin Durant is a Net, Klay Thompson is unlikely to play this season as he rehabs a torn ACL, and Steph Curry just broke his hand.

Nov. 12, 2018. It's a day that forever will live in Warriors infamy.

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