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#pounditWednesday, October 5, 2022

Kevin Durant

Nets issue statement announcing major Kevin Durant decision

Kevin Durant looks up

Apr 23, 2022; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) looks up at the scoreboard in the third quarter against the Boston Celtics at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant has apparently had a change of heart.

After asking the Brooklyn Nets to trade him and then recently reiterating his stance, Durant has decided that he wants to move forward with his current team. The Nets released a brief statement on Tuesday announcing that team executives met with Durant and Durant’s agent and the two sides “have agreed to move forward with our partnership.”

Steve Nash was also part of the meeting, which likely means Durant is still open to playing for the head coach.

Durant first requested a trade back in June. He then reiterated his stance in a meeting with Nets owner Joe Tsai earlier this month. Durant reportedly told Tsai during that meeting that he either wanted the Nets to part with Nash and general manager Sean Marks or trade Durant.

The Nets had attached an asking price to Durant that some teams viewed as unrealistic, which which may have been by design. Their best chance at contending for a title next season is to keep their core of Durant, Kyrie Irving and Ben Simmons together. Durant may have come to the realization that staying in Brooklyn will give him his best chance to win, too.

Report: New contending team enters mix for Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant dribbles the ball

Oct 11, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) in action against the Philadelphia 76ers during the first quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The Brooklyn Nets are still fielding offers for Kevin Durant, and a new team has reportedly entered the mix for the two-time NBA Finals MVP.

The Memphis Grizzlies recently reached out to the Nets to discuss a potential Durant trade, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic. It is unclear if they made a formal offer, but the Grizzlies have several first-round picks available in addition to a core of young, talented players.

Brooklyn is obviously seeking multiple first-round picks in any Durant trade, and the Grizzlies have five available. Charania reports that they seem more inclined to part with their draft picks than they do young players like Jaren Jackson Jr. or Desmond Bane.

When news first broke in June that Durant had asked the Nets for a trade, Grizzlies star Ja Morant was one of the first who appeared to subtly recruit Durant.

Memphis finished second in the Western Conference last season with a 56-26 record. They lost in six games to the eventual NBA champion Golden State Warriors in the second round of the playoffs.

The Nets have not shown a sense of urgency to trade Durant despite him giving team owner Joe Tsai an ultimatum. They appear committed to their high asking price, at least for now. One team has been viewed as the unofficial front-runner to land Durant if he is eventually moved.

Kevin Durant names his new favorite NFL team

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 is apparently shifting his NFL allegiances — jokingly, at least.

The Brooklyn Nets forward took notice of Los Angeles Rams cornerback Decobie Durant, a rookie fourth-round pick. This was enough for the basketball star to declare himself a Rams fan now in honor of his “cousin.”

Decobie Durant was definitely pleased at the recognition.

Is Durant joking here? Probably. The Nets forward has always rooted for his hometown Washington Commanders. If anything, he probably couldn’t resist the joke, especially since it was inevitably going to spark plenty of jokes about him bandwagoning for the defending champions.

Durant has much bigger issues on his plate right now than his favorite NFL team. Clearly, he can still look at other things with a bit of levity despite his standoff with the Nets.

Report hints at Nets’ stance on Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving

Kevin Durant looks up

Apr 23, 2022; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) looks up at the scoreboard in the third quarter against the Boston Celtics at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

The Brooklyn Nets and Kevin Durant remain at odds, and there does not appear to be any resolution in sight. That may be by design, at least in the case of the team.

In an appearance on ESPN’s “Get Up!” on Thursday, Brian Windhorst said the Nets and Kyrie Irving appear to be on the same page. Windhorst added that Irving understands his best shot at the long-term contract he wants is to have a successful season with Brooklyn. As far as Durant goes, the situation is uncertain, but the organization appears to be setting a clear stance to other teams despite his trade demand.

“Right now, I think the Nets want to run this team back, and they’re hoping that Kevin Durant agrees,” Windhorst said. “The way that they’re conducting trade talks and the prices that they are asking has teams out there thinking they don’t really want to trade Kevin Durant anyway. They want to bring this team back.”

Windhorst had previously characterized the state of things between Durant and the Nets as a “stalemate.” Brooklyn has no desire or incentive to trade their star player. Durant is trying to make the Nets feel otherwise, possibly by causing as much disruption as possible.

The Nets’ resolve may next be tested if Durant takes one drastic step. Until then, it does not sound like a Durant trade is really on the table.

Kevin Durant trade request having 1 big impact on Nets schedule

Kevin Durant looks up

Apr 23, 2022; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) looks up at the scoreboard in the third quarter against the Boston Celtics at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Brooklyn Nets fans have another bone to pick with Kevin Durant this week.

The NBA formally released the 2022-23 season schedule for all 30 teams on Wednesday. Brian Lewis of the New York Post noted that the Nets only have 13 nationally televised games next season, down 50 percent from last year’s total of 26. Brooklyn has also been taken down to just one game on ABC (from five last season).

The dramatic cut in national TV games figures to have everything to do with Durant’s ongoing trade request. While other All-Stars like Kyrie Irving and Ben Simmons are still on the Nets roster, the former MVP Durant has been the marquee attraction in Brooklyn over the last couple of seasons.

Whether Durant is gone from the Nets before the beginning of the season or otherwise fails to participate with the team, the greater scheduling powers that be are preparing for him to be unavailable for Brooklyn next season.

Kevin Durant responds after getting called out on ‘Hard Knocks’

Kevin Durant with a hood on

May 8, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) warms up before game against the Denver Nuggets at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Troy Babbitt-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant was the victim of an unexpected callout on Tuesday’s episode of “Hard Knocks,” and it did not go unnoticed.

Tuesday’s episode put the spotlight on John Brown, a bodybuilder and two-time Mr. Universe. Two of his sons, Equanimeous and Amon-Ra, play wide receiver in the NFL, with Amon-Ra emerging as a key player for the featured Detroit Lions.

In a clip from the show, the elder Brown discussed his process when working with his sons, which involves training the whole body. That discussion veered into a brief shot at Durant, who is known for having skinny legs and a skinny frame.

“Kevin Durant and these guys, who mess their Achilles up,” Brown said. “I have a question for guys like Kevin Durant. When’s the last time you did a calf raise?”

Durant had no problem responding, via Twitter, to Brown’s question. Apparently Durant did calf raises today.

Calling out Durant for the Achilles injury he suffered in 2019 is kind of bizarre. Of course, Durant was already dealing with a calf strain at the time, and some certainly blamed the Golden State Warriors’ training staff for clearing him to play. Maybe Brown would have had different advice. Brown might even say he would have prevented the calf injury in the first place. It almost certainly was not down to a lack of work, though.

Durant is always happy to take on Twitter trolls. Something like this was certain to get a response.

Report: 1 team viewed as ‘unofficial front-runner’ for Kevin Durant

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

The Brooklyn Nets have reportedly not shown any willingness to lower their incredibly high asking price for Kevin Durant, but it sounds like there was at least one offer that intrigued them.

Sam Amick of The Athletic describes the Boston Celtics as the “unofficial front-runner” to land Durant in a trade. The Celtics are said to have offered the Nets a package centered around Jaylen Brown and draft picks. Brooklyn turned it down and asked reigning Defensive Player of the Year Marcus Smart to also be included in the deal.

Sources told Amick that the Nets are using Boston’s offer as the starting point in negotiations with other teams. The message is essentially that any team that wants to outbid the Celtics had better be willing to part with their second-best player and then some. Brown is viewed as the second-most valuable player for the Eastern Conference champions behind Jayson Tatum.

Durant recently tried to turn up the pressure on the Nets by giving team owner Joe Tsai an ultimatum. Despite that, Brooklyn has shown no real sense of urgency to grant the 12-time All-Star’s request. If they do eventually lower their asking price, their first call may be to the Celtics.

Kevin Durant responds to bombshell rumor via Twitter

Kevin Durant dribbles the ball

Oct 11, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) in action against the Philadelphia 76ers during the first quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant may want the Brooklyn Nets to trade him, but the 12-time All-Star says he has no intention of calling it a career anytime soon.

NBA reporter Marc Stein shared on Monday that a team executive told him he believes Durant is more likely to retire than play for the Nets next season. The comment was supposedly made last month. While Durant has largely chosen not to address all the trade rumors involving him this offseason, he could not resist responding to the talk of him possibly retiring.

“I know most people will believe unnamed sources over me but if it’s anyone out there that’ll listen, I don’t plan on retiring anytime soon. S— is comical at this point,” Durant wrote on Twitter (edited by LBS for profanity).

Durant going the nuclear route never seemed realistic. Of course, there are other ways he could create headaches for the Nets if he is truly set on being traded.

It is noteworthy that Durant did not say anything about the actual trade rumors in his tweet. He could easily put the entire ordeal to rest if he said he is happy in Brooklyn, but he obviously is not. The issue at this point seems to be that the Nets have attached an asking price to Durant that rival teams are unwilling to meet. They may not be planning to lower that price, either.

Kevin Durant open to nuclear option if Nets don’t trade him?

Kevin Durant looks up

Apr 23, 2022; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) looks up at the scoreboard in the third quarter against the Boston Celtics at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant reiterated earlier this month that he wants the Brooklyn Nets to trade him, and the two-time NBA Finals MVP may be growing more and more frustrated with the franchise.

Durant initially asked Brooklyn to trade him in June. After weeks of trade talks seemingly going nowhere, he met with Joe Tsai and reportedly gave the Nets owner a choice: either keep Durant and get rid of GM Sean Marks and coach Steve Nash, or trade Durant. According to NBA reporter Marc Stein, some around the league believe Durant genuinely has no intention of playing for the Nets again.

One team executive told Stein last month that he believes Durant is “more apt to retire than play again for the Brooklyn Nets.” Stein said others predict that Durant will continue to become more of a problem behind the scenes if the Nets maintain their unrealistically high asking price in trade talks centered around him.

“If Durant hasn’t been traded by [training camp], there is a growing expectation in league circles that he will continue trying to cause as much of a ruckus behind the scenes to try to prod the Nets into lowering their asking price at last to facilitate a deal,” Stein wrote.

Even with Durant trying to turn up the heat on the Nets, a separate report on Monday claimed they are showing no urgency to trade him. We highly doubt Durant would retire rather than play for Brooklyn next season, but making a threat like that could be his only leverage. He still has four years remaining on his current contract.

There are other ways Durant could create problems for the Nets if he really wants to dig in. Perhaps he is more willing to go that route than many initially believed.

Report: Kevin Durant, Nets locked in a ‘stalemate’

Kevin Durant with a hood on

May 8, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) warms up before game against the Denver Nuggets at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Troy Babbitt-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant recently tried to turn up the pressure on the Brooklyn Nets by giving them an ultimatum, but it does not sound like that had any impact on how the team is handling the situation.

Durant initially asked Brooklyn to trade him in June. After weeks of trade talks seemingly going nowhere, he met with Joe Tsai and reportedly gave the Nets owner a choice: either keep Durant and get rid of GM Sean Marks and coach Steve Nash, or trade Durant. According to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, the Nets have not changed their approach despite the big demands.

Windhorst said on “Get Up” Monday that the Nets still have shown no urgency to trade Durant. He described the situation as a “stalemate” between the team and its 12-time All-Star.

“I think what we have here is really a study of leverage. First off, the Nets do not have leverage in trade talks with other teams,” Windhorst said, as transcribed by Bleacher Report’s Tyler Conway. “They are not giving them the offers that they want. They see no reason to increase them. And so they’re not making any progress there. And Kevin Durant clearly does not have leverage with the Brooklyn Nets. He is asking for things: ‘Get me traded. Fire the coach. Fire the GM.’ He is being told no. So when you have denied leverage, you have a stalemate.”

Durant is under contract for four more seasons. Other than becoming a headache, there is not much he can do to force a trade. The Nets have understandably attached an extremely high asking price to the 33-year-old, and there has been talk that Durant could become difficult if he does not get his way.

For now, the Nets seem content to let the situation play out. If they do not receive a massive offer, they will probably hold onto Durant at least through the start of next season.