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Kevin Durant admits that altercation with Draymond Green played a role in his departure

Not surprisingly, however, is that it’s not quite that simple.

NBA: Playoffs-Golden State Warriors at Los Angeles Clippers Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Oh, great. Here we go again.

It’s been almost a year since the most famous regular season game in recent Golden State Warriors history. You know the one. The overtime loss to the Los Angeles Clippers. The sideline argument between Draymond Green and Kevin Durant, that escalated into a full blown locker room altercation.

The quotes. The stories. The reports. The awkwardness. The ensuing media silence from Durant.

Yeah, that story, that most of us thought was in the past. Ahh. How could we be so naive? Of course it wasn’t in the past.

But, like the past, it’s here, rearing its ugly head.

The story re-emerged on Thursday, when Durant paid a visit to ESPN’s First Take. You’re familiar with First Take, the show where hot takes aren’t even close to hot enough, and where soundbites emerge like vultures when a carcass is present.

On First Take, the topic was brought up partially because it’s still a talking point, and partially because it had been in the news recently. Last week, Green and Warriors GM Bob Myers were on ESPN’s The Woj Pod with Adrian Wojnarowski, and the topic was covered in depth. Both Green and Myers admitted to being more worried about the personal relationship between Green and Durant than anything else, though it sounded like all’s well that ended well.

Naturally, then, Stephen A. Smith wanted to ask Durant his side of the story. After initially talking about the altercation - and the ensuing fallout - Smith asked Durant directly if it impacted his decision to leave the Warriors and join the Brooklyn Nets this past summer.

Durant’s reply? “A little bit, yeah. For sure.”

“[When] your teammate talks to you that way, you think about it a bit,” Durant said, when asked to expand. “Like I said, we talked about it. But definitely, for sure. I’m not gonna lie about it.”

Now, there are a few things here to address. The first is that Durant’s answers in interviews, while always fascinating and illuminating, aren’t always consistent. The second is that he answered the next question - “Why did you ultimately decide to leave?” - with, “I just felt like I needed a switch.” That certainly seems to imply that he was leaving, with or without the incident. And third, Durant talked earlier about his disdain for the media situation that followed the altercation with Green.

Given what seems to be a positive relationship with Green, it would appear possible that when Durant says the spat influenced his decision, he’s talking primarily about what happened afterwards, rather than about his relationship with Green. Check out what he said earlier in the show:

“I wish that wouldn’t have happened,” Durant said. “I feel like that was a situation that definitely could have been avoided; it really came out of nowhere. And for us, everybody was just looking for something to tear us down with. And I think they used that. And that just brought in a firestorm . . . every day it was about my free agency, every day it was about my disposition as a player, what I look like on the bench, what I look like during the games. So it opened up a lot of nonsense that I think could have been avoided. And me and Draymond talked about it.”

Ultimately, it appears three things are clear: Durant didn’t like the altercation, didn’t like the media situation that followed, and was gone regardless.