It might only be news at this point if a player said he wouldn’t consider going overseas, but because Kevin Durant is a big name, we’ll pass this along.
Durant’s agent, Aaron Goodwin, told Sam Amick of Sports Illustrated that Durant is open to the idea of playing in Europe. So is another client of his, Jamaal Crawford.
“If the opportunity presents itself and the lockout persists, he’s going to have to consider it just as other players are considering it,” Goodwin said. “Kevin has shown some interest to know what the situation is and we’ll reach out to the players’ association and make sure that they’re aligned with the guys in case they do take an offer. But I think what you’re going to see happening is a lot of players are going to look at the opportunity if the lockout prolongs that they can go somewhere and play basketball.
“If they’re not allowed to play in the NBA, they’ve got to look at other opportunities. If you have teams that want you to play and the NBA is willing to sit out a year, why sit out a year?”
As we need to explain with all these rumors, Durant is under contract with the Thunder and can’t play overseas without a letter of clearance from FIBA, the international body of basketball. We should find out fairly soon what they are going to do — only allow people to go if the NBA cancels the season, or allow anyone to go so long as there is an out clause for when the lockout ends. But Durant and Deron Williams and everyone of them would need it.
The players union has threatened to take action to make sure players can go overseas now. Of course they are, they want the leverage. Which is why you see this coordinated “I’ll consider playing overseas” line from so many stars. We’re still skeptical many will follow, but the players would love to tell the owners they have other legitimate options (even if those options pay a lot less).