Kevin Durant hasn’t really said much about the Golden State Warriors since he was traded this summer to the Brooklyn Nets, fulfilling his wish to play with Kyrie Irving. Folks have openly wondered about Durant deciding to leave the best team ever assembled and strike it out with the mercurial Irving and friend DeAndre Jordan.
But what’s done is done, and Durant is now on the injured list rehabbing for the 2020-21 NBA season. Meanwhile, the talk recently has been about Irving and his mood swings — with Nets players and staff trying to refute the story from Jackie MacMullan about whether they exist at all.
That aside, Durant did have one thing to say about the Warriors that at least let us know he understands the perspective of folks who believe Golden State was a great place to play. Speaking to MacMullan, Durant said that he does not expect things in Brooklyn to be any better than they were in Golden State.
“Obviously leaving Golden State, I’m not expecting anything better than that,” he says. “I see this situation as, ‘All right, I’m coming to a young organization that has championship aspirations but doesn’t quite know what that feels like.'”
This is a nice check-in to the rationale of a player in Durant who famously goes back and forth on how he views his public life. There’s no doubt that Brooklyn, even next season, probably won’t compare to the overwhelming swath of championship hopes that existed in Golden State when he played with Klay Thompson, Stephen Curry, and Draymond Green.
But it looks like Durant wants to build something of his own, and that includes a legacy what has more resources available to him as the top-billed star in Brooklyn. From that perspective, Durant striking out on his own — whether it can never really be called that — is sort of endearing.
Who knows if that’s what narrative we will settle on for this time in his career? For now, Durant appears to understand that things with the Nets will be more difficult than they were with Golden State. Perhaps that’s this point of all this? He wouldn’t be the first über successful athlete to take the more difficult path even if it wasn’t as certain.
Hopefully Durant won’t grow to regret his choice simply because the Nets looked grassy and wanted wear.