Stephen A. Smith Unleashes Epic Rant Blasting Kevin Durant Amid Ongoing Rumors

Kevin Durant

Getty Kevin Durant #7 of the Brooklyn Nets

Last week, many around the NBA were upset following the news that Kevin Durant gave Brooklyn Nets team owner Joe Tsai an ultimatum while reiterating his request to be dealt from the team. One league executive was quoted as being ‘livid‘ by the news. The ultimatum would require the Nets to fire both Sean Marks or Steve Nash in order to keep the 12-time All-Star. A move teams believed Durant knew Tsai would reject, and he did primarily to lower Brooklyn’s asking price. The unnamed ‘livid‘ executive wasn’t the only one to express his frustrations with the Durant decision. 

Stephen A. Smith unleashed a truly epic rant about the Durant saga in Brooklyn on the August 15 episode of ESPN’s First Take. 


Stephen A. Smith on Kevin Durant

“Let me break this down for y’all. Kevin Durant arrives to the Brooklyn Nets in 2019. Signs 4 years $164 million. He had just torn his Achilles. They paid him $35 plus million a year just to come. Knowing he wasn’t gonna play a single game. He’s Kevin Durant. He deserves it. I would have done the same thing without hesitation because this brother’s gonna go all day every day to be healthy. You don’t gotta worry about no load management, him sitting out finding excuses not to play. That’s not how he rolls. His integrity is not to be questioned in that regard, but he was paid. So you missed the first season. The second season you come back, through no fault of your own, Kyrie gets hurt. James Harden gets hurt. You almost beat Milwaukee can’t get it done. Monster performance, right? This year, you got bounced out in the first round. You got swept. You were the only team in the entire postseason who got swept. That’s three years of basketball, and all I got to show for it is one playoff series victory,” Smith said on First Take


CAMERA ON ME! Stephen A. says there’s NO WAY he’d trade Kevin Durant 😬 | First TakeOn First Take, Stephen A. Smith discusses what the future holds for Kevin Durant and what he would do if he was in Joe Tsai’s situation with he Brooklyn Nets. #ESPN #FirstTake #NBAonESPN #NBA ✔️Subscribe to ESPN+ espnplus.com/youtube ✔️ Get the ESPN App: espn.com/espn/apps/espn ✔️Subscribe to ESPN on YouTube: es.pn/SUBSCRIBEtoYOUTUBE ✔️ Subscribe to NBA on…2022-08-15T15:25:38Z

Smith even broke down everything Tsai, and the Nets did to keep Durant happy so far during his time with the Nets. 


Steven A. Smith Sounds Off as Tsai

“I got Kyrie here because of you. James Harden because of you. DeAndre Jordan, DeAndre Jordan, good brother happy got his $40 million from the Nets when he did, but we know he’s past his prime, but you brought him there too. Steve Nash! No experience. Never even coached high school. Didn’t coach high school. Didn’t coach college. Didn’t coach pros, but you want to him as your head coach. I’m Joe Tsai. I’ve given you every damn thing you want it. You can give me a championship run legitimately with all of y’all on the court together. Y’all only played about 29 games together. I mean, give me a break. I haven’t gotten a return on my investment, and then you commit last summer to a 4-year $198 million deal that came on top of the $164 million.

Last time I checked, $198 million, $164 million, that’s about $361 million. Okay, that’s what I paid you and all I got to show for it is one playoff victory because you want to bounce? What? Not even one day on the contract, you asked him to be traded because the contract kicks in now. You ain’t going no damn place. You’re gonna stay your (expletive) right here,” Smith said, taking on the role of Tsai. 

Smith made some points in the history of the Nets and Durant. The team has done everything possible to appease Durant and Kyrie Irving since their arrival, up until the recent Kyrie discussions. But those went awry due to the Nets inability to rely on Irving, especially after his COVID-19 vaccine stance that caused him to miss so many games. Now, Smith encouraged Tsai by basically telling Durant, “tough luck, you’re staying,” rather than facilitating a trade for the superstar. 

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