More than a month after re-signing with the Golden State Warriors for a lesser contract, reigning Finals MVP Kevin Durant finally spoke about this decision. In an interview with Anthony Slater of The Athletic, Durant said he accepted less money, in part, to keep the team’s core together, adding he’s a smart guy and wants to keep their good run going. Also, Durant said Andre Iguodala, Shaun Livingston and Steph Curry were underpaid and should get the salary they deserve. “So I just took a step back and let the chips fall where they may. Then I took it in my hands,” said Durant.

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Durant also defended his decision, saying “it's my money" and “I can do what the hell I want with it.”

Durant agreed to $53 million deal

Last month, Durant agreed to a two-year, $53 million deal that pays him $25 million for the 2017-18 season, which is $6.8 million less than expected and $9.5 million lower than the maximum amount. According to Albert Nahmad of Heat Hoops, Durant’s decision helped the Warriors save around $25 million in salary and luxury-tax money.

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Durant's contract has an opt-out after the 2017-18 season that will give him a chance to iron out a long-term max extension with the Warriors. Durant’s decision helped the Warriors sign Curry to a five-year supermax deal worth $201 million, Iguodala to a three-year, $48 million deal and Livingston to a three-year deal worth $24 million.

Durant impressed with Wolves’ offseason moves

In the same interview with Slater, Durant praised the Minnesota Timberwolves for their offseason moves that turned them into one of the more talented NBA rosters.

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Golden State Warriors

Durant said the Wolves can have four All-Star caliber players on the floor with Andrew Wiggins, Karl-Anthony Towns, Jimmy Butler and Jeff Teague. The Wolves acquired Butler from the Chicago Bulls via Draft Day trade. The Wolves shipped Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and No. 7 pick Lauri Markkanen to the Bulls for Butler and No. 16 pick Justin Patton.

After trading Ricky Rubio to the Utah Jazz, the Wolves signed Teague to a three-year deal worth $57 million.

The Wolves also plan to sign Wiggins to a $150 million contract extension under the maximum designated extension before the season starts. The new labor agreement allows teams to sign two players on their rookie contracts to an extension. Wiggins is eligible to sign a five-year maximum “designated” extension while the Wolves can use the second on Towns, who is eligible for that second designated slot before the 2018-19 season.

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