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Kevin Durant rescinds trade request, will return to Brooklyn Nets in ’22-’23

Jason Burgos

The issues between NBA superstar Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets are officially over and the team will get what they wanted all along, and have the former league MVP wearing a Nets uniform next season.

On Tuesday morning, The Athletic’s NBA insider Shams Charania broke the news that Durant, Nets head coach Steven Nash, the team’s general Sean Marks, and own Joe Tsai recently met and have seemingly put all the issues between them to the side, and will pursue an NBA championship together in the 2022-2023 season.

“Steve Nash, Joe Tsai, and Sean Marks met with Kevin Durant and [agent] Rich Kleiman in Los Angeles on Monday and have decided to move forward with partnership, Nets say.”

Update on Durant and Nets situation

Related: Nets reportedly close Kyrie Irving trade market, plan to keep 7-time All-Star

It was only a couple of weeks ago that it was reported by various sources that Durant had doubled down on his trade request from July, and gave Tsai an ultimatum of it was either him or the head coach and GM. All indications after the meeting were that Tsai sided with his coach and the team executive. While this is a surprising development, it is not a completely stunning turn of events following a tumultuous summer for the organization.

All the signs pointed to Kevin Durant returning to the Brooklyn Nets next season

kevin durant, brooklyn nets
Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

When Durant took his stance of me or them earlier this month, most assumed that was the final nail in the superstar and the franchise’s relationship. However, there was still a boatload of evidence that made it seem far more likely that Durant would remain in New York — at least for the first few months of the season.

If you have been following the Kevin Durant trade saga here, you know that the asking price the Nets had was astronomical. And understandably so since he is arguably the best player in the league. Despite many organizations checking in on what it would take to get a deal done, none reportedly ever came anywhere close to meeting the high bar set by the Nets.

Furthermore, over the last month, there have been consistent rumblings from out of Brooklyn that the organization hoped everything would blow over and both Durant and Kyrie Irving would return in 2022-2023. On Monday, Charania also reported that the Nets had closed up shop on the Irving trade market and he would be back next season. That might have been an early hint at Durant’s return since that report came on the same day as talks between Durant and Nets brass.

Marks released a statement following the news stating, “Steve Nash and I, together with Joe Tsai and Clara Wu Tsai, met with Kevin Durant and Rich Kleiman in Los Angeles yesterday. We have agreed to move forward with our partnership. We are focusing on basketball, with one collective goal in mind: build a lasting franchise to bring a championship to Brooklyn.”

What does this mean for the Nets next season?

kevin durant, brooklyn nets
Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Nets were a favorite to win it all last season. While they have lost the scoring of James Harden this year, they will now have the defense and ball-handling talents of Ben Simmons instead. They will also get a version of Irving who is motivated to have a massive year and earn one more big-time long-term deal when he becomes a free agent next summer. Expect the news odds with bookmakers to install the Nets at least in the top three to win it all in 2022-2023.