The Brooklyn Nets’ experiment with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving has given basketball fans plenty of highlights and drama since the pair joined forces in the summer of 2019. But the team-up has also produced zero championships. So Durant’s alleged request for a trade out of Brooklyn, particularly after his pal Irving opted in for the final year of his contract, has people questioning the 7-footer’s grit.
Shannon Sharpe said as much on a recent episode of his Fox Sports’ UNDISPUTED with Skip Bayless. “I was surprised, but then I realized KD’s a runner, he’s a track star, he’s going to run away when it gets hard… I’m so disappointed in KD… he wanted to build his own team… now he wants out, already?!” the retired 3x Super Bowl champ started. Sharpe then suggested any mention of Durant in the GOAT conversation, especially with regard to LeBron James, should be buried forever.
This latest exchange is only the latest back-and-forth between Sharpe and Durant, especially with regard to the UNDISPUTED host’s criticism of the 2x NBA champ.
Durant did win two back-to-back chips with Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors in 2017 and 2018, but that franchise was already established as a winning one. So he left for the Nets one year later, reportedly because he wasn’t ever really accepted as that team’s “bus driver.”
However, Durant was considered the de facto go-to guy during his first eight years in the league, alongside Russell Westbrook with the Oklahoma City Thunder. He then won the NBA MVP award in 2014 but bolted to Golden State two years later, when his Thunder lost in the 2016 Western Conference Finals to the Warriors.
Durant’s want to leave Golden State in 2019 seemed to shift the balance of power in the NBA to the Nets. However, he and Irving have since not delivered to expectations, and this new trade request may leave KD forever branded a front-running ring chaser.
In fact, he’s reportedly asked the Brooklyn front office to speak with the Miami Heat or the Phoenix Suns (the respective No. 1-seeded teams for the Eastern and Western conferences at the end of the 2021-2022 regular season). And in an odd twist, there are rumblings that Easy Money Sniper may have been inspired to go back westward and reconcile with his previous team and 2022 NBA champs: the Golden State Warriors.
Yet even with the questions surrounding his fickle nature, Durant’s talent ensures he will remain one of the NBA’s most desired assets in the next upcoming years. Let’s see where the superstar lands next and how that’ll shake up the league’s landscape once again.
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