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#pounditFriday, April 16, 2021

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant shades Steve Kerr over comments about Warriors tenure

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant doesn’t seem to think much of Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr’s recent comments about Durant’s final season with the team.

Kerr was a guest on Logan Murdock’s podcast for an episode that was published on Monday. Kerr said he enjoyed the 2019-20 season — which saw the Warriors go 15-50 — more than he enjoyed Durant’s final season with Golden State in 2018-19. That Warriors team ultimately lost in the NBA Finals against the Toronto Raptors, ending a year that had Durant’s impending free agency hanging over the entire season.

Durant responded on Twitter with his own take on Kerr’s commentary.

There have been hints that Durant sometimes felt isolated on the Warriors, and that he and his ex-teammates aren’t on the best of terms. This probably won’t help dissuade him from those feelings.

On the other hand, Durant doesn’t seem to have had the best time during that season either. Maybe Kerr has a point.

Blake Griffin shares who recruited him most to join Nets

Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin is now a member of the Brooklyn Nets and set to make his debut for the team on Thursday. Griffin agreed to a contract buyout with the Pistons in order to become a free agent and gave back $13 million. He wanted to join a contender.

But who is most responsible for recruiting him to the Nets? Griffin says that it was Kevin Durant who worked hardest to get him there.

Griffin chose well when he picked the Nets. Brooklyn is second in the East at 24-13 and has really rolled since acquiring James Harden (they’re 17-7 since he joined the team). Harden also received recognition recently for his role on the squad.

Between the additions of Griffin and Harden, the Nets are looking like a serious title contender.

Kevin Durant gets in funny war of words with rapper Kash Doll over ‘KD’ name

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant is the only one that most of us think of whenever we hear the name “KD.” So it makes sense that he might get a little territorial over it.

The Brooklyn Nets star got into a funny spat with rapper Kash Doll over the weekend. It all started with a tweet from Kash Doll using the “KD” name.

“All these n—-s wanna f— KD,” she wrote in reference to herself.

Durant clearly did not appreciate the tweet and fired back writing, “You did not have to use those initials to get this tweet off…U have to relax with the KD talk, your name is KASHDOLL.”

“Nah, she really turnt up for no apparent reason dog,” the four-time scoring champion said in another tweet.

Kash Doll, who has appeared on songs with the likes of Lil Wayne, Big Sean, and Iggy Azalea tweeted back at Durant, calling herself “the real KD.” She also indicated that her beef with Durant was a friendly one.

Granted, Kash Doll’s real name is Arkeisha Knight. Durant has also been a superstar in the NBA for over a decade now and has been known as “KD” throughout. Both of these reasons suggest that he, in fact, is “the real KD.”

Kash Doll is quite late to the party though when it comes to rappers getting under Durant’s skin.

Report: Nets nearly signed Kevin Durant’s former Thunder teammate

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant already reunited with one former Oklahoma City Thunder teammate in James Harden, and he nearly did so with another one as well.

Shams Charania of The Athletic reported on Monday that the Brooklyn Nets considered signing veteran wing Andre Roberson, who played with Durant for three seasons. But the open roster spot instead went to Iman Shumpert.

The 29-year-old Roberson, a former All-Defensive Second Team player, became a free agent last offseason after spending his entire career with the Thunder. He still remains unsigned however. Roberson was teammates with Durant in OKC from 2013 to 2016. Harden was also teammates with Durant on the Thunder but was gone by the time that Roberson got there.

Granted, Durant and Roberson did have a bit of beef after Durant left OKC. Perhaps that factored into why Brooklyn did not ultimately sign Roberson.

Kevin Durant out at least two games with hamstring strain

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant can’t seem to stay on the court this season, with another injury costing him at least two games.

The Brooklyn Nets announced Sunday that Durant will miss at least the team’s next two games on Monday and Tuesday with a left hamstring strain. His status beyond that remains unclear.

Durant has had a very strange season. The Nets star has twice landed in the league’s health and safety protocols, with the most recent issue being particularly bizarre. Until now, he had largely stayed healthy in what is his first season back from the Achilles tear he suffered during the 2019 NBA Finals with Golden State.

Durant will miss road games against the Sacramento Kings and Phoenix Suns. After that, the Nets have the Lakers and Clippers on the road, which he will definitely want to be back for if at all possible.

Video: Kevin Durant hugs ex-Warriors teammates after win

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant had nothing but love for his former teammates after Saturday’s game.

Durant’s Brooklyn Nets beat the Golden State Warriors on the road 134-117 on Saturday night. The contest marked the first time Durant faced the Warriors at the Chase Center since leaving the team for the Nets in 2019.

The Warriors played Durant a tribute video (seen here) to thank him for his contributions over three seasons with the team, which included two championships.

“The tribute video was cool. I think about those moments daily. Every single moment that I’ve had in this league I think about it and try to analyze it and get better from it,” Durant said after the game.

KD had 20 points, five rebounds and six assists in the win. After the game, he shared hugs with Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Steph Curry.

Seeing Durant and Green hug was mildly surprising given some of their history. But apparently Durant has remained very tight with Thompson.

The Nets were already tough after having both Durant and Kyrie Irving on the team. But they got even better when James Harden joined the duo. Harden had 16 assists in the game.

Warriors gave Kevin Durant a tribute video ahead of Nets matchup

Kevin Durant

The Golden State Warriors played a tribute video for Kevin Durant prior to Saturday night’s game.

Durant left the Warriors after the 2019 season and decided to sign with the Brooklyn Nets as a free agent. He missed all of last season while recovering from his torn Achilles tendon but is back and looking good this season for the Nets.

In three seasons with Golden State, Durant won two championships and was named NBA Finals MVP both years. The team made the NBA Finals in 2019 but Durant got injured and they lost to Toronto.

Here is the video, which includes some nice quotes from Steve Kerr.

Durant, 32, is averaging 29.5 points per game, which is his highest mark since winning the scoring title in the 2013-2014 season.

Kevin Durant rips NBA for jerking him around during game

Kevin Durant protocols

Kevin Durant ripped the NBA for jerking him around during Friday’s Brooklyn Nets-Toronto Raptors game.

Durant was not allowed to start the game due to contact tracing rules. He was later cleared to play in the game and entered in the first quarter. However, Durant was pulled in the third quarter and removed from the game.

The NBA explained that Durant was tested three times in 24 hours, including twice on Friday, and all tests were negative. He was in contact tracing and originally not allowed to play because a person he was around on Friday was tested for COVID. The person’s test originally was inconclusive, which is why Durant was cleared to play. But when the associate’s test came up positive, Durant was pulled.

Durant ripped the league for the seemingly odd policy that allowed him to play but then pulled him.

“Yo @nba, your fans aren’t dumb!!!! You can’t fool em with your Wack a– PR tactics.. #FREE7,” Durant tweeted (edited for profanity).

Durant’s frustration is understandable; the league had no consistency for its dealings with KD, which was confusing. He thought he wasn’t playing, then he was cleared, and then he was pulled. How could he not be mad?

The NBA is operating under a “negative until confirmed positive” assumption. And that’s what threw so many people off, and why it feels inconsistent for the league to claim it is operating “out of an abundance of caution.” If they were being abundantly cautious, Durant wouldn’t have been cleared to play while the test result for the close contact was inconclusive.

Kevin Durant tweets two-word response after wacky game

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant tweeted a simple response after his wacky game on Friday night.

Durant had to come off the bench for the first time in his career. That was because he was not cleared due to the NBA’s health and safety protocols. However, Durant was eventually cleared by the end of the first quarter for the Brooklyn Nets against the Toronto Raptors.

Then things got weird again when Durant was pulled from the game in the third quarter.

After being pulled, Durant tweeted the words “free me.”

So what happened with Durant? The Nets star tested negative for COVID-19 three times in the last 24 hours, including two rapid tests on Friday. However, someone with whom he interacted prior to the game had an inconclusive test. Durant was held out of the game while that test result was reviewed.

When the test result came back positive, Durant was removed from the game.

Contact tracing is underway to determine whether Durant was a “close contact” for the person who was positive.

Video: Kevin Durant stunned after being pulled from floor during game

Kevin Durant protocols

Kevin Durant had one of the most baffling experiences with the NBA’s health and safety protocols during Friday’s game against the Toronto Raptors.

The Brooklyn Nets forward was unable to start the game due to contact tracing, but was cleared to play by the end of the first quarter and ultimately came in off the bench. In the third quarter, however, Durant was notified that he was being pulled in accordance with health and safety protocols.

This was the apparent moment Durant learned of the change in status.

It was not clear how Durant was allowed to play two quarters after initially being cleared, then had that clearance revoked. ESPN’s Malika Andrews reported that the decision came “at the direction of the league.”

We have seen players pulled mid-game due to the health and safety protocols this season. We have not seen anything like this, where Durant was held out, cleared, then pulled again. There was no indication from either the Nets or the NBA regarding what had changed so abruptly to prompt the reversal.