Phoenix Suns superstar Kevin Durant opened up about his trade request from the Brooklyn Nets during an exclusive interview with Shams Charania of The Athletic.
The two-time Finals MVP said Kyrie Irving‘s trade request from the Nets was a big factor.
“Once he asked out, I was just trying to figure out what direction the team is going in,” Durant said. “Once I had no understanding of what direction we’re going in, I tried to make the best decision for me.”
The Nets traded Irving to the Dallas Mavericks on February 6. Three days later, Brooklyn sent Durant to Phoenix. Irving and Durant only played in 74 games together with the Nets.
Kevin Durant: ‘I Wasn’t Trying to Prove the Nets Is a Sh**ty Organization’
Durant revealed to Charania that he “wasn’t trying to prove the Nets is a sh**ty organization.” The All-NBA forward holds no ill will toward Brooklyn.
“I want the best for that organization,” Durant said. “I wanted the best for us every game. I hated it had to go down like that. I wasn’t trying to prove the Nets is a sh**ty organization. I was trying to prove that the Nets are a great organization, that they care about their players, want the best for their players. Certain sh*t just didn’t work out. I understand that. I’m not here trying to prove that the Nets was wrong, I think they did amazing by me the whole time I was there, not just with the trade. Coming off the Achilles injury, get back into playing — they made sure they were there for me every step of the way. And I appreciate that for life. I feel like we’ll be tied as family members for life regardless of how it finished.”
Durant averaged 29.0 points, 7.1 rebounds and 5.8 assists in 129 games with the Nets.
Kevin Durant Doesn’t Care About His Legacy
Durant admitted to Charania that he doesn’t care about his legacy anymore.
“I don’t care about legacy,” Durant said. “I used to. I used to want to carve out a lane or space in this game for myself that people can remember, but it’s become too much of a thing now. It just becomes too much of a focus on other people. What’s he done, what’s he done? Comparisons. Before, when we wasn’t doing all this debating, I cared about it … I’m about to be in the same breath as these top guys. It was big. Nowadays, I truly, truly don’t care. I truly just want to go out there and produce, be the best that I could be, go home, hang with my family, that’s it.”
Durant is one of the best players in NBA history. He’s a two-time champion, two-time Finals MVP, one-time regular-season MVP, four-time scoring champion and 13-time All-Star. The Texas product will be a first-ballot Hall of Famer one day.
“Once I left to go to the Warriors (in 2016), I figured any logical thing, when it comes to me it’s out of the window,” Durant said. “When it comes to me, people are not going to think in a logical way or simply look at what I’ve done and say that’s it. They gotta add a narrative to it, they gotta push something to discredit me. Once I left to go to the Warriors, it’s been the gymnastics on how to discredit me every step of the way. It’s like, damn, that’s not even fun no more like engaging with people because y’all aren’t even being truthful. You move the goalpost every time, you expect the most out of me and if I don’t reach it I’m a failure. It’s like, what’s the problem? I don’t throw my s— at people. People want their own experience in the NBA. Their experience is their experience. I can’t say anything. I let it be. When some fan says, ‘KD, I don’t like how you did this.’ I can’t be upset at that. That’s your view and how you look at the league. I just learned how to accept that, move forward and be the best me.”