When the season started, D’Angelo Russell admitted he called his dad to fanboy about playing on a team with Steph Curry, Draymond Green and by the end of the season, possibly Klay Thompson. Everyone knew the Timberwolves wanted him and that Karl Anthony Towns is one of his best NBA friends, so it seemed interesting he opted for a lesser role.
The logic was obvious, the Warriors still gave him a better shot of getting to the Finals and playing alongside Steph Curry is something every point guard can’t pass. While the Finals appearance wasn’t a sure thing, the Warriors could guarantee a lot more of something he values. Short sleeves. (via Minneapolis Star Tribune):
“I thought the opportunity [with the Timberwolves] was amazing,” Russell said after Warriors shoot-around Friday. “It was definitely something I was considering very strongly. But then when this opportunity [with the Warriors] came, the weather is way better, so that helped me.”
After his Lakers debacle, D’Angelo revived his career in Brooklyn. New York will always carry good basketball memories for him, Russell will also remember the wind chill:
“I did my first winter in New York and that was tough,” Russell said. “So to get the opportunity to go somewhere where it’s warm again, I think that played a major part in my plan.”
It will never cease to amaze me that weather and temperature is so often a factor in a decision like this. If you are lucky, you play in the NBA for a decade. Doing so, you will make life changing money and after that have all the time in the world to sunbathe and chill in flip flops. It’s not like this is an outdoors sport and linebackers are slamming you down a frozen field in Green Bay.
Not to mention everyone is in LA or Miami during the offseason. Yet, weather and climate is and will be something players consider when picking teams.