Considering that it’s been more than three years since Kevin Durant last played a game for the Golden State Warriors, it’s a bit surprising just how much I’ve ended up writing about him this summer.
But KD has been the news of the NBA’s offseason, and that news is related to the Warriors — partially because he used to play for them, and partially because his fate impacts the Dubs as they attempt to repeat as NBA champions.
Durant’s saga — which featured him asking Brooklyn Nets owner Joe Tsai to either trade him, or dump coach Steve Nash and general manager Sean Marks — has linked KD to everyone from the Warriors budding rivals, the Memphis Grizzlies, to the Warriors themselves.
And now it appears to be over. For now, at least.
On Tuesday morning, the Nets — along with Durant’s media company, Boardroom — released a statement that they have decided to continue with their “partnership.”
August 23, 2022
Here’s the full statement:
The following statement has been released by general manager Sean Marks:
Steve Nash and I, together with Joe Tsai and Clara Wu Tsai, met with Kevin Durant and Rich Kleiman in Los Angeles yesterday. We have agreed to move forward with our partnership. We are focusing on basketball, with one collective goal in mind: build a lasting franchise to bring a championship to Brooklyn.
It’s unclear what changed. Perhaps Durant realized that the Nets might not cave to his demands, and didn’t want the drama to spill into training camp. Perhaps he realized the best offers might come from teams he didn’t want to play for. Or perhaps he really just had a change of heart after meeting with the Nets brass.
Whatever the case, Durant seems primed to spend the year in Brooklyn, where he’ll be part of an absolutely fascinating roster, paired with Kyrie Irving and Ben Simmons. There’s enough talent in that core to win a championship. And there’s enough drama in that core to fuel a seven-season MTV show.
And of course, this is only for now. As Durant has reminded us time and time again, things can change, and they can change quickly. Maybe the team gets off to an awful start. Maybe better offers fly in once we hit the midway point of the season and recently-signed contracts are eligible to be traded. Maybe things combust with the dramatic star trio.
We’ll have to wait and see. I’d guess this is more of a pause on the saga than a halt to it. But for now, KD is staying in Brooklyn ... and that’s probably good for the Warriors.