Kyrie Irving Doesn’t Know What to Make of Cavaliers’ Offseason or LeBron James’ Uncertain Future

Earlier this week, a USA Today report indicated that LeBron James has been frustrated with the way things have gone for the Cavaliers so far this summer. While a bunch of teams around the league have improved through free agency, the Cavaliers have been surprisingly quiet when it has come to trying to improve their team. And when you couple that with the fact that LeBron is going to be a free agent next summer and could conceivably leave Cleveland to finish off his career elsewhere, it has left a lot of NBA fans confused as to which direction the Cavaliers are going to go moving forward.

Cavaliers star Kyrie Irving sounds like he’s just as confused as everyone else. On Tuesday night, Irving attended Sports Illustrated’s Fashionable 50 event in Los Angeles, and while he was walking the red carpet, SI asked Irving about the Cavaliers’ offseason and LeBron’s uncertain future with the team. And Irving acknowledged that it’s a strange time for the Cavaliers right now.

“We’re in a peculiar place,” Irving said. “The best thing we can do is handle things with class and professionalism. Obviously, we have a great owner that’s willing to spend a little money on guys that he believes in. At this point, we just see what happens throughout the summer.”

It’s worth noting that, while LeBron’s impending free agency has been a big source of discussion this summer, Irving could also be a free agent after the 2018-19 NBA season. And that means that his days with the Cavaliers could also be numbered, especially if LeBron skips town next summer and the Cavaliers don’t have a clear plan in place for the future.

The good news for Cavaliers fans is that, despite the “peculiar” summer they’ve had thus far, they’re still going to have a great chance to make yet another run to the NBA Finals next season. But beyond that? No one seems to know what the future might hold for the team. Not even the guy who could become the face of the franchise if and when LeBron decides to leave.

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Allen Iverson Didn’t Play During the Big3’s Stop in Philadelphia, and Fans Were Really Upset About It

On Sunday night, Ice Cube’s new Big3 basketball league made a stop at Wells Fargo Arena in Philadelphia for a slate of games. And in the days leading up to the event, the Big3 used Allen Iverson—who is a player/coach for the league’s 3’s Company team—to get Philly fans excited about the league coming to their town. It was to be a homecoming of sorts for AI, who spent a decade playing for the 76ers at the start of his NBA career and officially retired as a Sixer in 2013.

AI tried to temper expectations on Saturday by telling fans in Philly not to expect the 25-year-old AI to take the court in front of them. But while talking with Philly.com and other publications in the area, he strongly suggested that he would be playing during his team’s game, which was scheduled to be the fourth and final game on Sunday.

“I’m not going to go out there and be the 25-year-old Allen Iverson—you’re going to see a 42-year-old man out there,” he said. “But to be able to do that, for my fans, I thought that would be cool, just to get back out there again…for my fans to get that flashback.”

Plenty of fans in Philly bought into the hype and reportedly crowded into Wells Fargo Arena on Sunday. They came to see AI play in Philly one last time.

But just hours before his team was set to play, AI took to his Instagram account and posted a video to announce that he would not be playing in the Big3 game. He didn’t really give a reason for why he would be sitting out of his team’s game, but he did say that, despite not playing, he would still be there to coach and interact with those fans in attendance.

 

A post shared by Allen Iverson (@theofficialai3) on Jul 16, 2017 at 2:35pm PDT

“To all my fans out there, based on advice from my doctor, I will not be playing in the game tonight for the Big3,” he said. “I will be there to coach my team and beat Dr. J’s team. I will be interacting with all my fans, and we’ll have a great time and see some great basketball. I love you fans for supporting me all of the years up to date, and I’ll see you when I get there.”

The Big3 posted the video on their Twitter page as well:

The problem with that was that, while AI may have had a legitimate excuse for skipping the game, the Big3 made the announcement about him sitting out so late in the game—both literally and figuratively—that it immediately looked like the Big3 had used the idea of AI playing in Philly as a PR stunt to sell tickets before pulling the rug out from fans. As For The Win reported, there were a lot of fans who showed up at the event to see AI play only to find out that he wouldn’t be playing while they were already in their seats. And there were a lot of people at home who ripped the Big3 for the way they handled AI’s absence from the game:

AI and the Big3 tried to make the most of the situation. AI received a hero’s welcome prior to the 3’s Company game:

He also addressed the crowd and thanked everyone for coming:

“I’m glad I had a chance to come back home,” AI said. “Ain’t nothing like this relationship we have. I love you for supporting me throughout my career, and still today, you’re supporting me.”

But once his team started playing, fans who came to see AI play, not coach, chanted “We want Iverson!” and begged him to take the court:

But it wasn’t to be. AI, the guy who played through so many illnesses and injuries during his time in Philly, stayed on the sidelines. It made a lot of people both in the arena and at home angry:

And the backlash was so strong that, early Monday morning, Ice Cube was forced to address the criticism of the way the league handled AI sitting out of the game on Twitter. Cube said he was just as disappointed as everyone else about AI sitting out of the game. Cube also said AI was disappointed about it, and he told the fans in Philly that he owes them one the next time the Big3 is in town:

At the end of the day, the people who showed up at Wells Fargo Center on Sunday to see AI play basketball probably didn’t miss much. AI is obviously one of the most beloved athletes in the history of the city and will always have a special place in the hearts of Sixers fans, so it would have been nice for those fans to see him take the court. But AI has struggled in limited action in the Big3 so far this season, and he is clearly just a shell of his former self. So he probably wasn’t going to go off for 30—or hell, even 10—in the game last night.

That being said, this might be one of the many challenges the Big3 faces as it moves forward. It’s smart of them to use specific players to promote events and put fans in the seats. But if those players end up being forced to sit out due to injury, illness, or something else, then the Big 3's promotions are going to start to feel like PR stunts, and people are going to stop showing up for games. It will be part of the league’s growing pains, but it’s a problem they’ll have to address from now on whenever they decide to lean on former NBA stars to promote their product.

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LaVar Ball Shoots Down Rumor About Lonzo Ducking De’Aaron Fox in Summer League

 

Earlier this week, the Lakers held Lonzo Ball out of a Summer League game against the Kings. And while that normally wouldn’t be all that big of a deal, Lonzo was scheduled to square off against De’Aaron Fox in that game for the first time since Fox got the better of him during Kentucky’s win over UCLA in the 2017 NCAA Tournament. So some NBA fans suspected Lonzo was skipping the game in an effort to duck Fox.

Fox himself even seemed to suggest that Lonzo was ducking him when he sent out this tweet that he deleted later:

Since then, Lonzo has silenced those who criticized him for sitting out that game by playing his two best Summer League games thus far. But some fans are still wondering why he didn’t play against the Kings, especially since he’s looked healthy in other games this week.

While attending an AAU tournament with his youngest son LaMelo on Thursday, LaVar Ball was asked about Lonzo’s absence during the Kings game. And as you might expect, he downplayed all of the speculation surrounding why his son sat out of the game. He said Lonzo isn’t “scared of nobody” and scoffed at the idea of Lonzo sitting out to avoid playing against a particular opponent:

“We don’t do that shit,” he said. “We ain’t scared of nobody. What you talking about? Y’all can think whatever y’all want. Whatever Magic [Johnson] and Rob [Pelinka] got him doing is what they got him doing.”

The speculation surrounding Lonzo skipping the game against the Kings has been kind of silly. We could understand people questioning him missing the game if there was some random streetball player taking part in the Summer League that had it out for him. But we’re pretty sure Fox is going to make the Kings roster next season, and we’re pretty sure Lonzo is going to have to play against him at some point. So what exactly would be the point of him ducking him in a Summer League game?

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Lonzo Ball Went Off in Front of LeBron James During a Summer League Game, and NBA Twitter Lost It

Lonzo Ball played his best game of the Las Vegas Summer League on Wednesday night. He went off for 36 points, 8 rebounds, 11 assists, 5 steals, and 2 blocks in the Lakers’ 103-102 win over the 76ers. And he did it while wearing a pair of Nike sneakers as LeBron James looked on from the crowd, which made the night even crazier than it already was for both Lonzo and those NBA fans watching the game from home.

When Lonzo took the court at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas for Los Angeles’ game against Philadelphia, the first thing that most people noticed was that he wasn’t wearing his signature Big Baller Brand ZO2 sneakers.

Instead, Lonzo was rocking a pair of Kobe Bryant’s signature Nike sneakers, which sparked quite a reaction among NBA fans on Twitter:

That reaction continued once the game started. As Lonzo picked apart the Sixers’ defense and did a little bit of everything on the court, NBA fans picked apart his affiliation with BBB and commented on how much better he was playing in a pair of Kobes:

There was also a LeBron sighting at the game, and of course, that got a lot of attention, too. Some NBA fans openly wondered why LeBron was at a Lakers’ Summer League game and speculated about how it might be a sign that he’s seriously considering joining the team in free agency next summer:

LeBron downplayed that talk by telling ESPN.com that he’s in Las Vegas right now to work with the players on the Cavaliers’ Summer League team. He also said that he was at the Lakers/76ers game to see former Cavaliers assistant coach Lloyd Pierce, who is now with the Sixers.

But while speaking with ESPN.com in the fourth quarter, he acknowledged that he was impressed with what he saw from Lonzo. “He can really pass it,” LeBron said.

LeBron also acknowledged that he was impressed with what he saw on Lonzo’s feet by putting up this Instagram post after the game:

 

Just. Do. It

A post shared by LeBron James (@kingjames) on Jul 12, 2017 at 9:44pm PDT

For his part, Lonzo said that he saw LeBron in the crowd. He claimed it didn’t make him play any harder, but he said he hoped LeBron got a glimpse of what he’s able to do on the court. “Saw him at halftime,” Lonzo told ESPN.com. “It’s nice that he came out and got to see the game. Did it inspire me? No. But I hope he saw a good game.”

And Lonzo also explained his choice of sneakers for the game. While everyone else freaked out over him wearing Kobes, he offered up a simple explanation for why he went with Nike sneakers over his usual BBB kicks. “Um, you know, Mamba mentality,” Lonzo said, referencing Kobe. “Thought I’d switch it up.”

He added: “Like I said, you can wear whatever you want when you play with Big Baller Brand…and it is just nice to get out there and do that.”

The Lakers return to action on Thursday night against, oddly enough, LeBron’s Cavaliers. Don’t be surprised if LeBron shows up to see Lonzo again. And after what he was able to do against the Sixers, don’t be surprised if Lonzo wears Kobes again, either.

 

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Every Look From Raf Simons’ Spring 2018 Collection

Last night, Raf Simons presented his Spring 2018 collection during New York Fashion Week: Men's, which took place in Chinatown underneath the Manhattan bridge. Chinese lanterns printed with artwork produced by Peter Saville, who's worked with Simons before, for New Order hung from the ceiling. Of course, there were also celebrities in attendance: ASAP Rocky, NBA champ Andre Iguodala, Raptors power forward Serge Ibaka, Julianne Moore, Jake Gyllenhaal, Ashton Sanders, and Marc Jacobs

During the show, models—both male and female—walked down the runway holding umbrellas. It was reminiscent of a scene from Blade Runner where Harrison Ford's character Deckard heads to Chinatown. There were also neon signs that spelled out the word “REPLICANT,” a reference to the fictional biorobotic androids from the 1982 sci-fi film.

“There are a lot of things that go back to my early days and why we started doing the things we did,” Simons said about the inspiration for the collection in an interview with Vogue. “So there was strong music references from the past, as you can see. But there are juxtapositions in a different way taken out of context, basically; it’s about movies (about Blade Runner, clearly), it’s about cultures sliding together—that’s the most important message for me, Asian culture and the culture of the west coming together. And you know there was a bit of new wave, punk attitude, but not aesthetically, more in the attitude like taking different kinds of things . . . good vibes . . . I wanted it to be energetic.”

The collection included 50 menswear looks—distressed tailoring, wide-brimmed hats, wide trousers, oversized sweaters, glossy raincoats, knee-high galoshes, pouches in collaboration with Eastpak, trench coats (some emblazoned with Saville's Joy Division album art), and more. All of the suiting and knitwear pieces were comprised of Merino Wool, a collaboration luxury wool authority The Woolmark Company. In addition to apparel, Simons also presented new Ddidas Detroit Runners and Adilette slides. 

Check out the entire Raf Simons Spring 2018 collection below. 

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James Harden Has Reportedly Inked Biggest Contract Extension in NBA History

James Harden has just signed a record-breaking contract with the Houston Rockets.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Brian Windhorst, the shooting guard has agreed to a four-year extension deal that will earn him $228 million through the 2022-23 season. 

Though the Rockets did not reveal the financial terms of the contract, officials did confirm the four-year extension.

“It's my pleasure to announce we've reached agreement with James Harden on a long term contract extension. Since he arrived in Houston, James has exhibited the incredible work ethic, desire to win, and passion to be the best that has made him one of the most unique and talented superstars in the history of the game,” Rockets owner Leslie Alexander, said in a press release. “Additionally, the commitment he has shown to our organization, the City of Houston, and Rockets fans all over the world makes him a perfect leader in our pursuit of another championship. I'm very happy for James, his mother Monja, and their family on this exciting day.”

The megadeal will start in the 2019-2020 season, starting with an annual salary of $37.8 million with an 8 percent increase each following year. The total value of the extension is $170 million.

Last summer, Harden signed a four-year extension with the Rockets that was reportedly worth $118 million. ESPN reports the NBA star was able to add four more years to his deal thanks to a new CBA rule that allowed extensions for “superstars.” (Harden became eligible after making the NBA All-Star team last season.)

Harden still has two years remaining and about $58 million owed in the original deal.

“Houston is home for me,” Harden said in a press release. “Mr. Alexander has shown he is fully committed to winning and my teammates and I are going to keep putting in the work to get better and compete for the title.”

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Nick Young Signs One-Year Deal With Warriors, Old Tweet of Him Bashing Their Fans Resurfaces

On Wednesday, Nick Young agreed to a one-year, $5.2 million deal with the Golden State Warriors, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. The move will get Young incredibly close to capturing his first NBA title, but it will also unite him with the fanbase he bashed on Twitter last year. 

As for how Young will fare in Steve Kerr's pass-heavy offense, he's already given us a glimpse into his thoughts on running that type of gameplan in the past as well. 

Now, people are confused trying to understand how Young could go from hating Warriors fans to joining their team one year later.

Hopefully, time heals all wounds. 

Send all complaints, compliments, and tips to sportstips@complex.com.

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Joel Embiid’s Beef With LaVar Ball Just Took Another Crazy Turn

It’s going to be at least three or four years before the 76ers and Lakers are both good enough to make it all the way to the NBA Finals—and that’s probably being generous—but if and when they do ever make it that far, the two teams are going to have one hell of a series.

A beef seems to be brewing between the two sides, and it’s all because of—who else?—LaVar Ball. During the NBA Draft in June, LaVar went on ESPN and said that he thinks the Lakers are going to be a playoff team now that they have added his son Lonzo to their roster. Lakers head coach Luke Walton immediately downplayed LaVar’s comments, but LaVar is, as usual, not backing down from what he said and once again trying to will his words into existence.

It’s nothing new for him, but LaVar’s playoff remarks led to this response from Sixers rookie Ben Simmons, who called LaVar “crazy” for his postseason prediction:

It also led to Simmons’ outspoken teammate Joel Embiid sending out this not-so-cryptic tweet about LaVar and Lonzo a short time later:

And LaVar responded to Embiid and Simmons during a radio interview on 97.5 The Fanatic. He didn’t hold back as he ripped the Sixers players for talking too much on social media.

“When you don’t win and don’t even make the playoffs and don’t even stay on the court long enough, that’s the best thing you can do is tweet,” LaVar said. “These guys ain’t played a game, always hurt, and at the bottom of the totem pole. So guess what? Get your asses off the goddamn Twitter, and get in the gym.”

Embiid and Simmons didn’t respond to LaVar’s interview right away, but on Sunday night as Embiid was hosting an Instagram Live session, someone asked him a question about LaVar. And while he didn’t provide a lengthy response to the question, he did share three words that seem to sum up exactly how he feels about LaVar at the moment.

“Fuck LaVar Ball,” Embiid said.

NBA fans predictably went wild over the comment:

At some point, all of this will be settled on the court. But as of right now, it’s clear there’s no love lost between certain members of the 76ers and Lakers. And if the two teams ever do get good enough to make consistent Finals runs, this could be a fun rivalry for years to come.

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Miami Heat Finally Release Chris Bosh, Announce They Will Officially Retire His Jersey

Stuck in health limbo for most of the last few years, we've all been waiting to see what Chris Bosh's next move would be. As far as the Miami Heat are concerned, Bosh's chapter with the team on the court is over, after Miami officially waved Bosh on Tuesday evening.

But the announcement on the team's website was accompanied by a bit of a plot twist. Team President and basketball lifer Pat Riley explained that the Heat would no longer allow players to wear Bosh's jersey number, and the franchise promised to hold an official retirement ceremony to take No. 1 out of circulation in Miami for good.

“He changed our lives for the better, in a way we never would have imagined, when he joined the Miami Heat,” said Riley. “We will forever be indebted to CB for how he changed this team and led us to four trips to the NBA Finals and two NBA Championships. He is, without a doubt, one of the greatest players in the history of the franchise. The number '1' will never be worn by another player and we can't wait to someday hang his jersey in the rafters.”

Bundling this in with the release was a pretty extraordinary step, especially when you consider how divisive Bosh's Heat career was among casual NBA fans. A lot of hoop heads celebrated him as an integral piece of a back-to-back title winner, though others constantly berated him with labels like “soft” and diminished his role in the success of the “Heatles.”

Thankfully, the former group was the loudest when news broke, and a chorus of supporters including LeBron James and Dwyane Wade came out to salute Bosh's career.

On top of the nice tribute to his career, Bosh is going to be rolling in the dough when he decides to officially retire. He won't quite be the Bobby Bonilla of basketball, but the payments will reportedly continue through the year 2022.

Though it's a shame Bosh's career had to end the way it did, he (probably) leaves the game with excellent numbers, a couple of rings, and a likely path toward the Hall of Fame. It's pretty tough to top that.

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Remember When Kevin Durant Ruined the Fourth of July?

When Kevin Durant signed a five-year, $86 million contract extension with the Oklahoma City Thunder on July 7, 2010, he did so without any of the pomp and circumstance that came along with the decision that LeBron James would make on The Decision just one day later. Unlike LeBron—who infamously sat down for a live TV interview with Jim Gray to discuss his decision to leave the Cavaliers in order to join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh on the Heat—KD didn’t make a big deal out of his announcement. He revealed that he would be staying put in OKC through at least the 2015-16 NBA season by sending out this simple, straightforward, no-frills tweet, spelling and grammatical errors and all:

And when The New York Times tracked KD down later that same day to ask him why he decided to go that route as opposed to broadcasting his decision in a more spectacular fashion, he seemed confused by the question. “What’s there to really talk about?” he said, before explaining why he was so low-key when it came time to tell the world that he was going to stay in OKC for another five years. “I just told everybody I wasn’t talking about it, really. I just kept it to myself. That’s just the type of person I am. I don’t like the attention around me.”

At the time, KD was applauded by many NBA fans and members of the media for using social media to announce his contract extension rather than dragging the process out like LeBron did. KD’s method was seen as a breath of fresh air at a time when the NBA free agency period was starting to turn into a much bigger storyline than it had been in the past, due to the sudden growth and popularity of social media. “Kevin Durant didn’t need a one-hour special on the World Wide Leader,” Darnell Mayberry, a writer for The Oklahoman, wrote at the time. “The Thunder’s star was satisfied with just 140 characters.”

But sometime between July 2010 when he signed his contract extension with the Thunder and July 2016 when he became a free agent, KD’s attitude towards free agency seemed to change. The NBA free agency period continued to become more and more of a circus every year, with NBA reporters like David Aldridge of NBA.com, Marc Stein of ESPN, and of course, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports tracking the every move of NBA free agents the moment the clock struck midnight on July 1.

Players like Deron Williams, Dwight Howard, and LeBron—who became a free agent again in 2014 and announced his decision to return to the Cavaliers by penning a letter to the city of Cleveland in Sports Illustrated—took full advantage of it by meeting with as many teams as they could and hearing as many pitches from executives as possible once they became free agents. And as KD’s own free agency started to get closer and closer, he seemed to embrace the idea of going through the process just as players like Williams, Howard, and LeBron had.

By early 2016, there were reports about how KD wanted to be courted once he officially became a free agent. Much to the chagrin of all the Thunder fans out there, it didn’t sound like KD was going to announce that he was re-signing with the Thunder through another tweet. Rather, Yahoo Sports reporter Chris Mannix reported that KD was looking forward to being wined and dined by different NBA teams. Sources told Mannix KD’s free agency was going to be a much bigger production than it had been in 2010:

Durant is looking forward to being recruited, to being courted, to being treated like the biggest free-agent prize since LeBron James six years ago. The chances of Durant sending a simple tweet again announcing his return are virtually nonexistent, but the Thunder remain hopeful that his decision, regardless of how this season ends, is the same.

KD downplayed all of the various reports about him entertaining offers from other NBA teams during free agency throughout the 2015-16 NBA season. He said all the right things about the Thunder organization and his teammates, and he never really gave any indication that he was going to seriously consider leaving OKC once July 1 hit.

But by late June, it was clear that KD was going to, at the very least, listen to what other teams had to say. According to ESPN, KD’s representatives scheduled meetings with the Warriors, Spurs, Celtics, Heat, Clippers, and Thunder. Teams like the Knicks, Wizards, and Lakers reportedly tried to get time with KD, too. It seemed like it was exactly what KD was looking for, based on the earlier reports.

It was unclear how long it was going to take KD to make his final decision, though. He had so many meetings set up that it didn’t sound like he was going to get around to letting the world know where he would sign for at least a week once NBA free agency started. One Oklahoman report even suggested KD might hold off until July 9 to sign with a team, which would have meant nine days worth of speculation surrounding what he was ultimately going to do. But once free agency officially started, Wojnarowski revealed that July 4 looked like the day KD would make his announcement:

During the first few days of July, it was difficult to keep up with all of the KD news that was coming out. There were reports about how his initial meeting with the Thunder on July 1 “went well,” according to ESPN sources. But there were also reports about how a subsequent meeting with the Warriors went “very well,” which seemed to trump the earlier report about his OKC meeting:

There were other meetings with the teams listed above on July 2 and July 3, too. But after two days, it seemed like the Thunder and Warriors were leading the pack and had the best chances of signing KD to a deal. KD met with the Thunder for a second time on July 3 to conclude his scheduled free agency meetings:

And then, he stepped back from the process to weigh his options, with many reporters close to the situation—like ESPN’s Royce Young—reporting that he was close to picking either the Thunder or Warriors:

The stage was set for July 4 to be the day KD would announce his decision:

July 4 would end up being one of the most agonizing days in recent history for NBA fans, players, and reporters. When LeBron made his decision in 2010, there was a lot of hype surrounding it, but there was also a definitive day and time when everyone would be able to tune in and see which team LeBron was going to pick. The Decision would air at 9 p.m. on ESPN, and shortly thereafter, we would all know where LeBron was going to play the following season.

It wasn’t like that for KD. While most people suspected his decision was going to come down on July 4, KD himself hadn’t confirmed or denied the reports about it, and he also later admitted that when he woke up on July 4, he still hadn’t made a definitive decision as to which team he was going to sign with. So the world waited—and oddly enough, poked fun at KD’s old BlackPlanet page—while he mulled over the decision on the morning of July 4.

To KD’s credit, he didn’t keep us waiting for very long. At right around noon on July 4, KD took to Twitter for the second time in his NBA career to announce what he planned to do in free agency. But this time, it took more than 140 characters to get his message across. He tweeted out a link to a post he had written for The Players’ Tribune called “My Next Chapter”:

And in the post, KD shared some stunning news: He was leaving the Thunder to join the Warriors.

The news sent shock waves through the NBA community, and it ruined a lot of people’s Fourth of July. Thunder fans were obviously upset about the fact that KD was leaving the team, just six years after he had committed to OKC and told fans that he planned to stay there for a long, long time:

Other NBA fans were disappointed with KD’s decision as well. Many reacted to the news about KD signing with the Warriors by pointing out that there wouldn’t really even be a reason to play the 2016-17 NBA season since the result seemed like a foregone conclusion:

The words “Damn KD” started trending on Twitter:

And within just minutes of KD making his announcement, Stephen A. Smith was all over ESPN ripping him for it. He was one of many media members upset with the way KD’s free agency period ended:

NBA players also chimed in and seemed just as shocked as fans. It was surreal to see what some of them had to say:

In the end, not everyone had their days ruined. There were plenty of Warriors fans out there who were thrilled to hear about KD’s decision. Golden State was just a few weeks removed from blowing a 3-1 lead to lose to the Cavaliers in the 2016 NBA Finals. So KD signing with the Warriors was exactly what they needed at the time.

But for most people outside of the Bay Area, July 4, 2016—a day that should have been all about beer, burgers, and fireworks—was anything but a celebration. It was a shocking jolt to the system that proved the NBA was about to change dramatically during the following season. It was also a disappointing end to what seemed like a fun free agency period for KD.

It was basically everything that July 7, 2010 wasn’t. Back then, KD was just looking to work out a deal with as little fanfare as possible. But by 2016, that had all changed—and there were so many people who resented and still resent KD for it. And they're not going to forget about it anytime soon.

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