In his recent sitdown with the Wall Street Journal, Kevin Durant unearthed some juicy details about his process in joining the Brooklyn Nets.
Since July 1, the date that Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant signed, the Brooklyn Nets‘ new duo of superstars hasn’t exactly been transparent about their collective decision.
There’s been no press conference; no sit-down interview with major Nets reporters; not even a coordinated “hype” video with Brooklyn’s social media team.
Given that Kyrie and KD aren’t exactly… how does one put this… keen on the media, none of this should have come as a surprise. Outside of a cutesy Instagram post and a fun sitdown with Yahoo! Sports’ Chris Haynes, KD and Kyrie’s performances thus far have been pretty on-brand and tight-lipped.
Well. That certainly changed. Wall Street Journals‘ J.R. Moehringer dropped a bomb on Nets Nation: a 25 minute read detailing all things KD.
To be truthful, there are a million spinoffs, takeaways, and talking points from Durant’s honest sitdown, some of which I’ll be discussing within a longer-form article later this week. But for now, let’s keep all things Nets.
One specific segment has run through headlines faster than a blood-doping cheetah. If you have any rooting interest in the team from Brooklyn, expect the hairs on your legs to stand up.
Per Moehrginer, “Kleiman met Durant for lunch at Cipriani, a chic restaurant in SoHo, and gave him one last overview of all the teams and all his options. Durant said: ‘All right. Well. I’m going with Brooklyn.’Just like that.
Kleiman was taken aback: For real? Yes, Durant said. End of discussion.”
As explained by Moehringer, KD came equipt with pretty clear motivating factors behind his big, abrupt decision.
“He’s always felt big love as a visiting player at Barclays Center, he says, and he wondered what it might be like if he were on the home team. Plus, the Nets offered the opportunity to join his ‘best friend in the league,’ Kyrie Irving”
Playing next to his best friend in a diarchy-like offense certainly could be the reason for Durant’s summer moves. Yet, there was another small detail that stood out.
While discussing his next possible home, Dumbo, a neighborhood in Brooklyn, Durant made sure to bring up its relative distance to Brooklyn’s practice facility, the HSS. This was not on accident. Although the Nets practice facility has become a bit of a meme in certain circles, it’s relative closeness to both the residential areas in Brooklyn and the actual Barclays Center is appealing to players.
Not long ago, Durant and Irving were heavily rumored to join the rival across the river, the New York Knicks. As pointed out by Mass Live‘s John Karalis, the Knicks’ practice facility is about 27 miles away from Madison Square Garden. With New York traffic, you’re looking at 40 minutes to an hour-15 in travel time nearly every single day. For basketball stars and workaholics like Durant and Kyrie, that’s a lot of time on the road. Perhaps this could have altered the duo’s tone.
Regardless, Durant and Irving will have the opportunity to change many narratives and compete for the title together. Let’s see if they can get it done.