Photo: clutchpoints.com

Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob said Kevin Durant’s decision to leave the team may benefited both sides.

“This is really an odd thing to say, but him leaving when he did may have turned out to be the right thing,” Lacob told The Athletic. “For him, certainly, I want him to have a good career, enjoy himself. He felt it was obviously not the right thing to stay. He wasn’t quite comfortable. I can’t explain why. I don’t know why. But for whatever reason, he moved on.

Durant signed a four-year contract with the Nets last summer, but has missed all of this season while rehabbing his ruptured Achilles. Lacob explained that the departure of Durant help the team to start retooling, while Klay Thompson and Steph Curry were injured, too.

“But he (Durant) wouldn’t have played this last year. He was injured. We would’ve had a huge payroll as a team. Maybe this is the best thing. We were able to start a rebuild a little bit earlier than we otherwise might have. Maybe it’ll prove to be the right thing in the long run that that occurred. I’m an optimist. I always look at things at what’s the positive in the situation. Yes, he left. That’s negative. But the positive is we got a chance to move forward quicker and to move into the next phase of what we’re doing.”