WASHINGTON (AP) The Washington Wizards can't promise hiring Scott Brooks as coach will lead to Kevin Durant signing as a free agent, but it doesn't hurt.
The former Oklahoma City Thunder coach side-stepped the topic of bringing Durant to Washington when he was introduced Wednesday. General manager Ernie Grunfeld said Brooks is in Washington to coach the current players.
That includes All-Star point guard John Wall, who Brooks says has ''another level'' to his game. Even if the Durant doesn't become a Wizard, Brooks' relationship with Wall and his teammates will be crucial to his success after late-season issues with his predecessor, Randy Wittman.
Owner Ted Leonsis says Brooks is a ''players' coach in the new NBA.'' As the Wizards seek to be a free agent destination, Brooks is another selling point.