Kevin Durant Gave One Hell Of An Answer When Asked If He'll Ever Demand A Trade Again

Maddie Meyer. Getty Images.

One thing I was interesting in seeing during all the Media Day pressers today was Kevin Durant facing the media after this "eventful" summer. On some level it's kind of awkward to demand a trade, not get traded, and then come back to Media Day where you have to essentially give off all the PR answers of how you're ready to compete for a title, you love and believe in all your teammates etc.

Of course, you knew his trade demand was going to be a big topic, and KD is usually pretty open and honest with this stuff, so let's have a listen

On one hand, I appreciate the honesty. KD essentially told us that when he signed that extension last summer, he had a certain expectation of who he was going to be playing with. Then the Nets traded Harden. Suddenly they were non-committal in terms of a long term extension for Kyrie. Whatever picture KD had in 2021 was no longer going to be true in 2022 and beyond. On the other hand, that does not sound like someone who is pumped up for the season. I don't know how much of it was KD/Sean Marks/Joe Tsai coming to an agreement as much as it was nobody in the NBA came close to wanting to pay the price to trade for KD, so he was stuck. It's not as if KD was about to sit out the entire season, so here we are. 

When asked about the possibility of KD asking for another trade at some point, it was dodge city in terms of his answer

That's avoiding the question 101 right there folks. As a Nets fan, would you feel reassurance right now after hearing that response? It's true, Nets fans should know that KD is one of the best players on the planet. There has never been a question of Durant's talent or any of that stuff when it comes to him being a Net. He looks and plays like the pre-injury KD. But it's almost as if he forgot everything that happened since April. He was not good in that first round series. Not just the terrible shooting splits, but he was turning it over nearly 5 times a game. He couldn't dribble! Durant then backed that performance up by demanding a trade. So while he doesn't have to prove anything to them in terms of his talent, I'd say this whole idea that fans should be confident in his commitment to the Nets is a little confusing considering he literally just demanded a trade and wouldn't even be a Net anymore if the team was willing to lower their price.

I won't just pile on KD here for his answer. Kyrie's presser was equally as weird

Did Kyrie make his decision to come back because he had a $36M player option, or did he come back because he was motivated by his postseason failures? Considering he was most likely going to have to sign for MLE money on the open market which is around a $30M paycut, that is why Kyrie picked up his option to return to the Nets. Nobody gives up that kind of money, regardless of what you did in the postseason the year prior. 

The Nets are by far one of the more intriguing teams we have as we enter the 2022-23 NBA season. It's not as if their roster is bad or anything like that. I have some questions about what they do at center and their perimeter defense is still a hole, but there is legit talent on this team. Who knows, maybe Ben Simmons is actually a good fit next to Kyrie/KD. Joe Harris will be back to provide legit shooting. I get a sense that people think this team will flat out suck just because of all the offseason drama, and I don't know if I'm willing to go that far. They were one of the top seeds in the East before KD got hurt last year and that was with Kyrie playing part time. 

This is essentially a contract year for Kyrie, so I expect him to not only be on his best behavior but also play his best basketball as he tries to rehab his image not just with the team, but across the league. The Nets are a team that enter every single season with NBA title expectations given their high end talent, and this is a group that has yet to make the Finals since Kyrie/KD joined forces. Who know how many more shots at it they'll have together, which is what makes this upcoming season so huge for them.