During the premiere of ESPN’s The Last Dance, plenty of attention was paid to the work of former Chicago Bulls general manager Jerry Krause. Some of that attention centered on the seemingly odd situation that arrived prior to the 1997-98 season, with Krause’s notable candor about the fact that head coach Phil Jackson would not be returning and, with that in mind, the Bulls would be heading to a breakup following an historic run.
Through that lens, Golden State Warriors standout Draymond Green appeared on WRTS: After Party, alongside Maverick Carter and Paul Rivera, and he couldn’t help but to draw a parallel to what transpired in Oakland during Kevin Durant’s last season with the Warriors.
Draymond really didn't hold back man pic.twitter.com/IdB0UIrpSo
— r~ steph curry's burner acct~ (@fymroo) April 21, 2020
The full video can be seen here but, as often is the case, Green was quite candid about the situation that transpired when Durant was facing a well-chronicled free agency decision.
“Steve (Kerr) would kind of hit on it of ‘let’s just enjoy this year for what it is because we don’t know what next year holds,'” Green said. “But it didn’t necessarily carry the same weight because what should have happened was Kevin coming out and saying ’this is it, let’s do this’ or ‘this isn’t it.’ But you can’t just leave the elephant in the room.”
“What happened was the question came to us every day,” Green continued. “Every time we spoke to the media, Klay (Thompson) and myself was asked about our contract and it was strictly due to Kevin.”
From there, Green went on to note that both he and Thompson publicly stated that they wanted to stay with Golden State, while Durant didn’t commit and, of course, eventually left for the Brooklyn Nets. Green then brought things back around in saying, in Durant’s direction, that “it does matter because you’re not the only person that has to answer that question.”
More colorful language followed, but Green then made the direct comparison to Chicago.
“I’m stuck answering that question all the time,” Green said. “Due to that, there was always an elephant in the room amongst us. As opposed to with them, they didn’t have that elephant.”
The vast majority of buzz surrounding the work of Krause and the admittedly bizarre situation with the Bulls has been negative and, honestly, it is easy to see why given that it was a historic run that could have continued. Still, Green is taking a bit of a different tact when assessing the situation and, in his view, it seemingly would have been better for all parties involved if Durant simply announced that it would be his last hurrah in Oakland, rather than keeping quiet and putting the spotlight on others to answer.