Kevin Durant is back with his teammates in Brooklyn just a few short months after demanding a trade and reportedly asking for head coach Steve Nash and general manager Sean Marks to be fired.
It has been a bizarre year for Brooklyn, who were forced to deal with point guard Kyrie Irving playing in only road games after declining to take the COVID-19 vaccine, dealt star James Harden to the Philadelphia 76ers, and were swept by the Boston Celtics in the first round of the NBA Playoffs.
Durant’s trade request appeared to be the end of his run in Brooklyn, but after failing to find a trade that satisfied both sides, Durant met with Nash, Marks, and owner Joe Tsai in August, ultimately deciding to "move forward" together.
"We're fine. We're good," Nash said Tuesday, according to the New York Post. "Ever since we talked, it's been like nothing's changed. I have a long history with Kevin. I love the guy. Families have issues. We had a moment and it's behind us. That's what happens. It's a common situation in the league.
"We all were hurting, seething, to go through what we went through last year, not being able to overcome all that adversity. Sometimes you lose perspective because you expect to win, but the reality is we were able to talk and discuss what we can improve on from last year. And also keep perspective. We went through a ton of stuff. You can’t just judge last season on [that] we lost in the first round."
When asked about Durant reportedly asking for his firing, Nash appeared to doubt it, saying he will have his moment to discuss it with Durant.
"You know, I never thought that was 100%," Nash said. "It’s not black and white like that. There’s a lot of factors, a lot things behind the scenes, a lot of things reported that aren’t accurate. A lot of things that are reported that aren’t 100% accurate."
"I’m going to hear it from Kevin when the time is right," Nash continued. "I’m going to talk to Sean. I’m going to talk to all the parties involved. You just work through it step by step."
Brooklyn enters the 2022-2023 NBA season with Irving able to fully participate now that New York allows athletes an exemption from the COVID-19 vaccine mandate. The Nets will also be banking on having Ben Simmons fully healthy after the former Sixer missed all of last season while holding out and dealing with a back injury.