Skip to main content
Larry Brown Sports Tagline. Brown Bag it, Baby.
#pounditWednesday, October 5, 2022

Kevin Durant

Report: 3 teams considered most likely Kevin Durant suitors

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 still wants the Brooklyn Nets to trade him, and there are at least three teams that remain interested in acquiring the 12-time All-Star.

Durant met with Nets team owner Joe Tsai in London over the weekend and essentially gave him an ultimatum, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports. The choice that he gave Tsai is to either keep Durant and get rid of GM Sean Marks and coach Steve Nash, or fulfill the trade request.

One of the primary reasons Durant has not been traded is the asking price. The Nets are said to have engaged with almost every team in the NBA, but no one is willing to meet their lofty demands. However, Charania notes that three teams are viewed as the “most significant candidates” to land Durant. Those teams are the Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors and Miami Heat.

The Celtics reportedly offered Brooklyn a package centered around Jaylen Brown. The Nets turned it down and asked for Brown, reigning Defensive Player of the Year Marcus Smart and multiple draft picks. The belief is that the Nets are interested in what the Celtics could potentially offer. That may not be true for one of the other teams that is pursuing Durant.

The Nets added Royce O’Neale and TJ Warren this offseason. They also had Kyrie Irving opt into his contract and have yet to see how Ben Simmons will fit alongside Durant and Irving. Their preference would almost certainly be to keep Durant, so they may choose him over Nash and Marks.

Report: Kevin Durant gave Nets owner an ultimatum

Kevin Durant dribbles

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 has given the Brooklyn Nets’ owner an ultimatum.

Durant met with team owner Joe Tsai in London over the weekend. During the meeting, Durant told Tsai two things, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

Durant reportedly reiterated his trade request. Durant also apparently told Tsai he was unhappy with the team’s direction and requested a change to the franchise’s leadership.

Apparently the choice for Tsai is this: either keep Durant and get rid of GM Sean Marks and coach Steve Nash, or trade Durant.

When presented with such an option, the choice seems obvious for Tsai: keep Durant and get rid of Marks and Nash.

Tsai gave power and control over the team to Durant and Kyrie Irving when he signed them in 2019. That means signing players they want, putting up with nonsense, and even firing a coach whose hiring the two approved (Nash).

The Nets added Royce O’Neale and TJ Warren this offseason. They also have Irving on the roster after he opted into his contract. They don’t want to trade Durant and break down the team, so it seems their most natural course of action would be to get rid of their coach and GM.

Kevin Durant has savage response to Twitter troll

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 always loved sparring with internet trolls, and the Brooklyn Nets star is back at it.

Durant on Monday was randomly mocked by a fan on Twitter who was having a rough morning. The person said he did not mind all the mishaps since, unlike Durant, he enjoys “taking the hardest road.” K.D. had a great rebuttal.

Durant has a tendency to fire back at critics when he would probably be best served ignoring them. We have seen several examples of that from him over the years. That may have been the case in this instance as well, but his response was pretty entertaining.

Shaq has brutal comments about Kevin Durant

Shaq looks on

Nov 22, 2017; Paradise Island, BAHAMAS; NBA former player Shaquille O’Neal during the first half of the game between the North Carolina State Wolfpack and Arizona Wildcats in the 2017 Battle 4 Atlantis in Imperial Arena at the Atlantis Resort. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Shaq is taking a swipe at Kevin Durant that is almost as vicious as the one that he took at Brad Miller back in the day.

The retired Basketball Hall of Famer O’Neal tore into the Brooklyn Nets star Durant in an appearance this week on “The Rich Eisen Show.” O’Neal was critical of Durant for wanting out of the team he essentially helped build.

“When you put a house together, you should live in it,” said O’Neal of the former MVP Durant. “You were the architect. You hired another architect [James Harden]. And now the other architect is in Philadelphia.

“You, as a leader, should make it work,” O’Neal added. “But you don’t want to make it work, I guess you’re gonna buy another house. You know he’s probably trying to get to a contender. It’s easier that way.”

O’Neal raises some great points here. For one, Durant hand-picked the Nets franchise, hand-picked his head coach (Steve Nash), and hand-picked his teammates (Harden, Kyrie Irving, and others) … only to go running for the backdoor once adversity hit. Even softer is that Durant listed the Phoenix Suns and the Miami Heat among his preferred trade destinations … teams that were already at the very top of their respective conferences last season.

These comments from O’Neal are similar to what a prominent colleague of his said about Durant even before Durant requested a trade from Brooklyn. While Durant’s god-tier game speaks for itself, his tendency to take the easy way out instead of weathering the storm right where he is will only continue to attract more criticism.

Kevin Durant set for showdown with Nets owner?

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

There has been no change with Kevin Durant despite the former MVP asking the Brooklyn Nets at the end of June to trade him. Over a month has passed since then, and Durant remains with the Nets. Now, according to one report, Durant is set to meet with the team’s owner.

Heavy’s Steve Bulpett reported in an article published on Tuesday that Durant is set to meet with Joe Tsai at some point this week. The meeting could help provide clarity regarding the 33-year-old’s future with the team.

One of the biggest reasons why the Nets have not yet traded Durant could be due to the shifting trade market. The Minnesota Timberwolves paid so much to get Rudy Gobert that it set too high of a standard for players deemed more valuable than the center. The price a team would have to pay to get Durant is so great that it could conceivably cripple a franchise and inhibit their ability to contend.

Have the Nets intentionally set their asking price for Durant too high because they don’t want to trade him? Or have they set a reasonable asking price in light of what Gobert fetched, and no team has met that asking price?

Those could be questions Durant wants answered.

Durant has four seasons left on his existing contract. The Nets may be trying to stall because they really want to keep him. But Tsai reportedly does not want Kyrie Irving back, which could make for an interesting conversation with KD.

Ex-Nets teammate makes wild claim about Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant dribbles

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 seeds of Kevin Durant’s discontent in Brooklyn were planted well before his official trade request, at least if you believe one of his former teammates.

Appearing this week on an episode of the Players Choice podcast, ex-Nets guard Mike James made a pretty crazy claim about Durant. James said that Durant called him before this year’s playoffs started and said that the Nets were about to lose.

“When I went back overseas, [we talked] like, ‘Alright, whoever season end first, the other one gonna come to watch the playoffs,'” said James. “When I first said it, I thought, ‘OK, you’re gonna be in the Finals. I’m gonna get to go to the Finals, that’s lit.’ So when they was trash and they was losing, I called him one day and was like, ‘Alright, you know what this means right? You gonna come to my playoff game.’ He was like, ‘It’s no way I’m coming to your playoff game.’

“Then like a week later, he called me before the playoffs start,” James added of Durant. “He’s like, ‘Yeah, imma be there in like a couple of weeks. We [the Nets are] fitting to lose.”

Players Choice clarified in a later tweet that James was referring to the Euroleague playoffs when he said “before the playoffs start.”

But even so, that is a neglible difference since both the Euroleague playoffs and the NBA playoffs began in mid-April this year within just a couple days of each other. James’ own quote even indicates that Durant was calling Brooklyn’s elimination “a couple weeks” before it happened.

Indeed, the Nets would get swept by the Boston Celtics in the first round of the NBA playoffs. To his credit, Durant made good on his promise to James, who was his teammate in Brooklyn during the 2020-21 season. But Durant apparently giving up on the Nets’ playoff hopes while the season was still going is a fairly wild relevation if true.

Nets have no interest in Heat’s offer for Kevin Durant?

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 interest in joining the Miami Heat, but a deal between the teams may not be feasible.

The Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson reported in an article published on Tuesday that the Nets are not interested in what Miami has to offer for Durant.

Miami is unwilling to include Jimmy Butler or Bam Adebayo in a deal for Durant. That leaves Brooklyn with very few options left. A potential Heat trade for Durant would likely send Tyler Herro and draft picks to the Nets. That alone apparently isn’t too enticing for the Nets.

The trade market was set so high in the Rudy Gobert deal that Brooklyn’s asking price for Durant is astronomical. Teams might have a hard time trading for Durant without gutting their current and future roster.

Some wonder if the Nets’ high asking price is an intentional deterrent because Brooklyn does not really want to trade the former MVP.

Paul Pierce has interesting prediction for Celtics

Paul Pierce at an event

Jul 10, 2019; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Former basketball player Paul Pierce arrives on the red carpet at Microsoft Theatre. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Truth is speaking some truth about his former team.

Retired Boston Celtics icon Paul Pierce made an appearance this week at the premiere of Showtime’s new “NYC Point Gods” documentary. Pierce was interviewed and offered an interesting (and blunt) prediction about the Celtics, specifically on their rumored pursuit of Kevin Durant.

“They’re not doing that,” said Pierce of the Celtics potentially trading for the Brooklyn Nets star Durant, per ESPN’s Nick Friedell.

With Durant now nearly a month into his trade request, the reigning East champion Celtics recently emerged as a possible suitor for him. They are even reportedly dangling one surprising player in talks for Durant.

But when you zoom out to get a lay of the land, it does not really make sense for Boston to sell the entire store for Durant when they just came two wins away from an NBA title. They also recently added two quality veterans in Malcolm Brogdon and Danilo Gallinari to fortify their current core.

As for Pierce, his perspective may be colored by some personal experience. After all, he knows what it is like to be on the wrong end of a Celtics-Nets blockbuster trade.

Report: Rivals think Nets have 1 reason for high Kevin Durant asking price

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 understandably been asking for a huge return in any potential Kevin Durant trade, but it is possible they have intentionally attached an unrealistic asking price to the two-time NBA Finals MVP.

Executives for other teams told Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer that they do not believe the Nets have any real intention of trading Durant. Those execs think that is why the Nets have taken such a hard stance despite no team coming close to meeting their demands.

The Rudy Gobert trade also played a role in setting the market, of course. The Minnesota Timberwolves gave up a package headlined by Patrick Beverley, Malik Beasley and four first-round draft picks to acquire Gobert from the Utah Jazz. Durant is obviously a far more impactful player than Gobert. Brooklyn would never trade K.D. for less than the Jazz got for Gobert, and there simply are not many teams that are prepared to part with — or even armed with — that many first-round picks.

Durant is the one who requested the trade, but Fischer notes that there has been no indication he plans to hold out when camp begins. At least one NBA legend believes Durant will end up staying in Brooklyn. Rival teams may be operating under the same assumption.

Report: New team emerges as ‘real threat’ in Kevin Durant sweepstakes

Kevin Durant dribbles

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 do not appear to be anywhere close to trading Kevin Durant, but a new team may have emerged as the favorite to land the 12-time All-Star if he is moved this summer.

The Boston Celtics are viewed as a “real threat” to acquire Durant, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports. They recently offered the Nets a package centered around Jaylen Brown.

According to Charania, the Celtics offered Brown, Derrick White and a draft pick. The Nets turned it down and have countered by asking for Brown, reigning Defensive Player of the Year Marcus Smart, multiple draft picks and at least one rotation player. While Boston is said to be reluctant to include Smart in addition to multiple other picks and players, Charania notes that “there is a deal to be had” even with Brooklyn’s steep asking price.

Durant flirted with the Celtics in 2016 before he signed with the Golden State Warriors. Boston pulled out all the stops and even arranged for a meeting between Durant and Tom Brady. It was believed at the time that the Celtics were the runner-up after Durant chose the Warriors.

Brad Stevens has already made several savvy moves since he transitioned from head coach to president of basketball operations in Boston. It is unclear if he would be willing to give up the assets needed to acquire Durant, but he is considering it.

We know of at least one team that does not seem to have pieces the Nets are interested in. The same is not true of the Celtics, but the question is whether they will be willing to part with those pieces.