Not even two months after requesting a trade, Kevin Durant will instead return to the Nets for the 2022-23 season, according to a Twitter post by the team that included “Boardroom,” a media company co-founded by Durant himself.
It was told in a theatrically played yet minimalistically presented paragraph from general manager Sean Marks that reads: “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.”
So what the heck did this summer of Nets basketball teach us?
For one, Durant’s desire to move elsewhere failed. The Nets’ asking price was historically high since debatably the best player in the world has four years left on his contract. The trend of depleting your future for a superstar seems to be fading for some — considering if there were any player to do it for, it’s him.
Second, it means Durant’s a hooper unwilling to sit out. If Durant were truly furious with Brooklyn, he could’ve opted to sit parts or all of the season out while accepting fines along the way. He isn’t going that route.
Next, nothing really … happened? At least on paper, the entire trade request saga was a brief stint of episode fillers that resulted in Durant, Kyrie Irving, Steve Nash, and Sean Marks all staying where they were before. If nothing, ownership and management grew closer.
Finally, the Nets have Durant, Irving, an allegedly ready-to-play Ben Simmons, Joe Harris coming back from injury, Seth Curry, Patty Mills and the newly-acquired role players Royce O’Neale and T.J. Warren. That’s a really good team — like a good enough to win the east, good team.
So long as everyone plays nice and the drama subsides (a big if), the Nets are relevant and in the championship hunt again.