Although there is speculation that the Brooklyn Nets could have Kevin Durant back this summer, his business partner threw cold water on it.
Could the NBA’s coronavirus hiatus actually benefit the Brooklyn Nets? Well, the break gives Kevin Durant more time to rehab from his Achilles injury, but that doesn’t mean he’s planning on making a triumphant return to the court for the playoffs.
“Honestly, not very realistic from my standpoint, and not even spoken about,” Durant’s business partner Rich Kleiman said via ESPN.
This clashes with Kleiman’s earlier comments about Durant’s rehab. On Feb. 29, Kleiman told Ben Golliver of the Washington Post that a return for the Tokyo Olympics was a possibility. Olympic basketball is supposed to begin on July 24.
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, owners see mid-to-late June as an optimistic timetable for the NBA to return. If that timetable is pushed back even further, it lines up with the start of the Olympics.
That’s the only reason why people are starting to speculate on a potential Durant return this season. If he does come back, the Nets would immediately become one of the most dangerous teams in the Eastern Conference. Brooklyn will likely enter the playoffs as the seven seed, but any team with Durant will be a formidable opponent.
Again though, Kleiman seems to indicate that Durant has little motivation to make his Brooklyn debut before the 2020-21 season. That was the original plan and it appears like he’s sticking to it despite the NBA’s coronavirus shutdown.
Things can change because the NBA situation is fluid, but for now, Nets fans shouldn’t pin their hopes on a triumphant return from Durant.