Barry: "Very Perplexing" That KD Would Want To Leave

Rick Barry does not understand why Kevin Durant would choose Brooklyn – or any team – over Golden State

Zach Gelb
July 09, 2019 - 9:12 am
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In May, Hall of Famer Rick Barry said he would advise Kevin Durant to remain a Golden State Warrior. In fact, Barry said he would give up part of his salary to play for a team that talented.

Well, Durant, who signed with the Brooklyn Nets in free agency, had other plans.

“I’m kind of surprised that he’s willing to do that and wants to do it,” Barry told Zach Gelb, who was filling in as host of Reiter Than You. “But hey, he’s entitled to do it and I wish him well. I hope he gets healthy as quickly as possible and it doesn’t impact his performance on the floor. But I’m disappointed as a former Golden State Warrior. What he did for the team was fantastic and I just wish that he was staying on. I’m still waiting to hear from him as to what his reason was for leaving. I’d just like to know what it is. It doesn’t matter what it is. I’d just like to know why.”

Perhaps Durant simply wanted to be in New York. Or perhaps the criticism – joining an established winner – got to him.

Barry doesn’t understand that.

“The guy was a two-time (Finals) MVP,” he said. “There’s no reason for him to feel badly about anything. He did exactly what he wanted to do. He won championships and performed at a very high level. That reason doesn’t make any sense because it’s not like he’s going off somewhere else to be the guy. He’s going someplace else where he’s got other great players, so I just don’t understand it. Only he can give us the answer. I look forward to seeing what it is. It’ll really be nice for me to get the answer to something that’s been very perplexing to me.”

The Warriors handled Durant’s decision about as well as possible. They are even retiring his jersey – along with Andre Iguodala’s. 

Some folks took issue with this. Barry did not.

“What Kevin Durant did for the team is something that nobody else has ever done,” Barry said. “Nobody’s been a two-time Finals MVP. An owner of a team is entitled to do whatever he wants to do when it comes to retiring jerseys. I have no problem with that. Reiter his jersey. The guy was a great player for the Warriors.”

Click below to listen to Barry’s interview in its entirety.