Thursday, Warriors forward Draymond Green defended Kevin Durant and fired major shots back at Paul Pierce, who was critical of Durant's decision to sign with Golden State, according to Warriors beat writer Anthony Slater.
Draymond Green goes off on Paul Pierce and those still harping on Kevin Durant's decision pic.twitter.com/Fen6DOm8Uv— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) October 14, 2016
Wow. “Like dude, nobody care what you did or who you did it for," Green said.
Durant was widely criticized for joining the Warriors, who set last year’s NBA regular season record for wins with 73, after his Oklahoma City Thunder had Golden State on the ropes. The Thunder led Golden State 3-1 in the Western Conference Finals, but they collapsed, and in July Durant announced his plan to join the Warriors.
Many old-school players have mirrored Pierce's stance, saying that they would never have aligned with their rivals. Some of today’s players (like Green) completely disagree, while others (like Portland’s Damian Lillard) see things the same way.
We’ve known since Durant first signed with the Warriors that Pierce thought it was a soft move.
If u can't beat um join um 🤔— Paul Pierce (@paulpierce34) July 4, 2016
Pierce expanded on that July tweet Wednesday in an interview with SiriusXM NBA Radio.
“I’m an old-school guy,” Pierce said. “I’m a competitor. I never believed that—when you want to be the best, you’ve to beat the best. That’s always been something that’s driven me. Today’s day and age, a lot of these guys are friends. That’s like if Bird decided to go play with Magic or something. These guys, I think the competition makes the game what is. And Oklahoma, I felt like, was a contending team. They had Golden State on the ropes. I understand when you have great players on losing teams who are tired of losing, struggling in the playoffs every year. You’re the lone star. I’ve been in that position. I could have left Boston years ago, but I stuck it out. I just feel like when you’re that close, as a competitor, you don’t go join the team that just put you out. That’s just me personally, but we’re living in a day and time where there’s a new generation. Guys I don’t think they are as hungry or competitive as my generation was, and that’s why you’ll probably see more of that.”
Wow. Harsh words from Pierce, saying today’s NBA players aren’t as competitive as the players from his prime. Certainly there is some truth in what Pierce said, but his jump in logic and generalizations make the argument flawed.
The Warriors and Clippers, for whom Pierce plays, will meet for the first time Dec. 7 in Los Angeles. Expect at least one technical foul.