Los Angeles, September 27: Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr explained why he was not surprised superstar Kevin Durant left the team to join the Brooklyn Nets.
Durant – who is expected to miss the upcoming NBA campaign due to an Achilles injury – signed a four-year, $164million deal with the Nets in the offseason after opting to become a free agent.
When asked about Durant's departure, Kerr said he could see it coming as he thought the Warriors' dominant line-up and team chemistry had seemingly "run its course".
"I don't know why," Kerr told "The Full 48" podcast. "I do think we're in a different era where players are more interested by new challenges ... players see that there's a huge expanse out there; there's this horizon with so many different opportunities. And so you're just gonna have fewer teams that stick together for a long period of time.
"And that's just kind of how it felt this year for us. This thing has a finite ending point and this is probably it."
Some speculated that the verbal confrontation between Durant and Draymond Green on November 12 was part of the reason the two-time NBA Finals MVP left, but Kerr refuted that theory.
"We kind of lost some momentum internally. It wasn't anything tangible," Kerr explained. "People point to the Draymond-Kevin incident. I honestly don't think that was that big of a deal, as crazy as that sounds."
As for whether there was anything the Warriors could do to keep the 10-time All-Star? Kerr said, "Probably not. ... this thing was running its course and we kind of felt like he was moving on."
Durant, a two-time NBA champion, averaged 25.8 points per game with 7.1 rebounds and 5.4 assists during his three seasons with the Warriors.