Durant has said he would have declared for the draft straight out of high school if allowed. But would he have signed a new Select Contract and earned $125,000 to play in the NBA’s minor league?
“I would’ve stayed in college,” Durant said. “It’s more friendly to kids. You can still get development, play on a team, build a camaraderie. Like that early, being 17 years old, not fully being a pro, but like a semi-pro, I probably wouldn’t want to do that.”
This comment will be heard by current prospects considering the minor-league route, and it might sway some toward college basketball. Plus, shoe companies are still driving the most money for these young players, and those shoe companies have invested heavily in the visibility of college programs.
Of course, this should be determined case by case. Just because a Select Contract wouldn’t have worked for Durant, it could still work for others. But his perspective could be telling and influencing.