Warriors veteran shares stunning revelation of near-departure to Conference rival

Los Angeles Lakers v Golden State Warriors
Los Angeles Lakers v Golden State Warriors / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages

Draymond Green has shared an emotional tribute to Klay Thompson after the veteran sharpshooter officially departed the Golden State Warriors for the Dallas Mavericks via sign-and-trade on Monday.

Speaking on his podcast, Green revealed that Thompson let him know of his impending departure last week, acknowledging that he's shed a couple tears and that he didn't try to persuade his long-time teammate out of the decision.

Draymond Green has stunningly revealed that he told key Golden State Warriors' figures that he was leaving last offseason

Along with his salute to Thompson's decorated 13-year career with the franchise, Green also revealed how close he came to joining the Memphis Grizzlies last year. While the 34-year-old has openly discussed the opportunity of joining the Western Conference rival previously, he stunningly revealed that he'd actually called Thompson, Stephen Curry and head coach Steve Kerr letting them know of his decision to join the Grizzlies.

"Last year during free agency I called Klay and I called Steph -- separate calls -- and Steve, and I was just telling them, 'yo I'm leaving I'm going to Memphis'. I remember that call with them."

Draymond Green

Whether this was legitimate or just a negotiating tactic is up for debate, but Green eventually re-signed with the Warriors on a four-year, $100 million contract in the first deal of free agency last year.

Golden State's decision to hand Green a four-year, $100 million contract, then turn around and offer Thompson a two-year, $48 million extension just months later, has now become a source of debate on its impact in the veteran sharpshooter's decision to leave the franchise.

Green's first year of the contract was tumultuous, having been suspended twice during the season and missing a total of 21 games for a chokehold on Rudy Gobert and swinging hit to the face of Jusuf Nurkic. His form late in the season was good, yet it was all too late as Golden State missed out on a playoff spot.

Green and Curry -- two members of the legendary NBA trio -- will now forge a new path ahead at the Warriors without Thompson who joins the Mavericks on a three-year, $50 million contract.