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#pounditFriday, August 12, 2022

Did Warriors’ title win influence Kevin Durant trade decision?

Kevin Durant in street clothes

Feb 3, 2020; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets small forward Kevin Durant (7) smiles during a time out during the second quarter against the Phoenix Suns at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant’s decision to demand a trade from the Brooklyn Nets was abrupt given how settled the team’s situation looked a few weeks ago. It may be the case that one major event that took place after the season ended may have impacted Durant’s thinking.

In an appearance on ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski suggested in a Friday appearance on “Get Up!” that the Golden State Warriors winning a title without Durant was frustrating for the Nets star and may have contributed to his desire to seek a trade.

“The Warriors winning a championship played a factor in this,” Wojnarowski said. “I think it exacerbated Kevin Durant’s frustration. I think the narrative that surrounded him that he dealt with in the aftermath of him leaving Golden State, and then going on to win a title without him, contrasted with what has gone on in Brooklyn in these last three years.”

Durant has never shaken the narrative that he cannot be the leader of a championship team, with critics pointing to the Warriors’ success before and after his arrival as proof that he was more of a luxury than a necessity during his time there. That criticism clearly bothered Durant even before the latest Warriors title. That most recent one, combined with the dysfunction and unreliable teammates he had in Brooklyn, may have pushed things over the edge.

Perhaps it is no surprise in light of that that Durant’s preferred destination is a team already in contention with a solid core of players.

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