WASHINGTON — The NBA hot stove season has given way to the hot take season, as Washington Wizards power forward Markieff Morris offered the latest review of Kevin Durant’s deal with the Golden State Warriors.
“I don’t think it’s right, but it is what it is,” Morris said, shaking his head, offering an unusually harsh critique from a fellow player. “You know what I mean by that. That ain’t right.”
Durant shook up the sporting world on July 4, announcing his surprise intentions to leave the Oklahoma City Thunder and join the Warriors, a team that knocked him out of the 2016 playoffs after the Thunder had a 3-1 lead.
Durant agreed to a two-year, $54.3 million deal, joining a roster that already included two-time MVP Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.
“The money is going to be there for anything,” Morris said, referring to Durant’s long list of suitors, including teams like the Wizards that he chose not to meet with. “It’s not about that. It’s the whole situation. It’s like, man, come on. You don’t do that.”
Morris stops short of articulating reasons why Durant shouldn’t have joined the reigning Western Conference Champions, but alluded to it being a character flaw, or at least weakness of conscience.
“I wouldn’t have went there [Golden State] for sure. First of all, they just beat us (the Thunder), so that’s more important,” Morris said. “It would have been a fire inside me to beat them next year, but a lot of guys are different.
“I just didn’t expect that from Durant. I know him a little bit, and I didn’t expect that.”
Notably, Morris made no mention of Durant coming to D.C., suggesting that disapproval was more based on principle than sour grapes. He did, however, suggest he was surprised to not land fellow free agent and new Boston Celtic Al Horford.
“I thought actually we would get him here, honestly,” Morris said. “It’s cool.”
The Wizards have had an odd start to free agency, collecting three centers and putting themselves in a bind for space under the salary cap. The team still has a need for depth behind Bradley Beal at shooting guard:
Point Guard: John Wall, Trey Burke, Tomas Satoransky
Shooting Guard: Bradley Beal
Small Forward: Otto Porter, Kelly Oubre
Power Forward: Markieff Morris, Andrew Nicholson
Center: Marcin Gortat, Ian Mahinmi, Jason Smith