After an offseason of drama in which Durant wanted out of Brooklyn and the Nets sought trade offers for the 12-time All-Star, Nets general manager Sean Marks said in a news release they are moving forward with their partnership.
“We are focusing on basketball, with one collective goal in mind: build a lasting franchise to bring a championship to Brooklyn,” Marks said.
Marks, Nets coach Steve Nash, Brooklyn owners Joe Tsai and Clara Wu Tsai met with Durant and Durant’s business manager Rich Kleiman in Los Angeles on Monday and reached a resolution.
The news release posted on the Nets’ Twitter account included the franchise logo and the logo of The Boardroom, the online media network owned by Durant and Kleiman.
Durant is entering the first year of a four-year, $194.2 million extension he signed a year ago, expressing a commitment to the Nets. But after another season in which Brooklyn faltered in the playoffs, Durant wanted out. Just weeks ago, The Athletic reported Durant gave the franchise an ultimatum: trade him or fire Marks and Nash.
Teams called the Nets, and the Nets called teams about potential deals, but a deal could not be found. The Nets sought a massive haul for Durant, and teams were unwilling to give up what the Nets wanted – multiple draft picks and All-Star caliber players. Miami, Boston, Toronto, New Orleans and Memphis were among the several teams who had discussions with the Nets about a potential Durant trade.
The Nets will start the season with Durant, Kyrie Irving (most likely) and Ben Simmons in the lineup, and on paper, that makes the Nets a factor in the Eastern Conference alongside Boston, Milwaukee, Miami and Philadelphia.
In the summer of 2007, Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant requested a trade, but ownership declined to move him. The Lakers ended up going to the 2007-08 NBA Finals and won the championship in 2009 and 2010.
Of course, this could be misdirection to take the focus off the Nets and Durant. The bigger question now: Does Durant finish the season with the Nets?
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Kevin Durant drops trade demand, agrees to ‘move forward’ with Nets
Source: Yahoo Sports