Following Kevin Durant's heated confrontation with Draymond Green after the Golden State Warriors' overtime road loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday, rumors are suggesting that the reigning Defensive Player of the Year could be on the trade block.
Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report suggested that if they had to pick one, the Warriors would choose keeping Durant over Green. Meanwhile, Bill Simmons of The Ringer suggested that the Warriors trade Green and Shaun Livingston to the Boston Celtics for Terry Rozier and Al Horford.
Simmons' The Ringer colleague, Kevin O'Connor, also explained why the Warriors could choose to keep Durant and trade Green. He compared such a move to a type of "emotionless" trade the NFL's New England Patriots would pull off:
"The Warriors’ best bet to add players and assets to sustain success deep into the next decade may be to trade Green...
But dealing Green next summer, before his production begins to tails off and ahead of his next payday, would be the type of shrewd, emotionless move the Patriots have made to keep their title window open."
Executives did tell O'Connor that the Warriors wouldn't dare trade Green, with one of them noting the defending champions are "all in." But if Green and Durant simply can't work out their differences, a trade involving the reigning Defensive Player of the Year isn't so crazy.
What This Means
The Warriors are aiming to become the first team to pull off a three-peat since the 2001-02 Los Angeles Lakers. Trading a superstar in Green during a championship quest would be risky - especially when you consider how hard it will be to land a comparable player in return.
For all we know, Durant and Green will work out their differences, and perhaps both will stay in Golden State beyond this season. But there's little doubting that the Dubs would prefer to retain KD - the two-time NBA Finals MVP - over Green.
But if the Warriors locker room is a mess throughout the season, perhaps the Warriors will look to shop Green at the February trade deadline.