Brooklyn Nets Did Not Want to Trade Kevin Durant According to West Exec

Brooklyn Nets, Kevin Durant. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Brooklyn Nets, Kevin Durant. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /

Up until this summer, any news story about the Brooklyn Nets not wanting to trade Kevin Durant would get met with a sarcastic “you don’t say?” But as we all know, this team moved closer than ever to its ultimate death button by taking calls for Durant following his surprise trade request.

Brooklyn just endorsing the idea of shipping out Durant made it a tough summer for the Brooklyn faithful. Bidding farewell to an already franchise-best player after just two seasons could only be described as a colossal failure.

But although things indeed felt grim prior to Brooklyn and Durant making up a few weeks ago, the team never got close to making a trade according to Phoenix Suns general manager James Jones.

“Brooklyn wanted to keep Kevin Durant,” Jones told Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic. “That’s why he’s in Brooklyn and not on some other team, but as far as with us, I get it. It’s always a great topic of discussion, but the one thing people forget is that when you’re talking about trades, or any player acquisition, the team that has the player has to be willing to move the player.”

According to Chris Haynes, Durant listed the Suns as a “preferred trade destination” shortly after news broke of his request to be moved. With Jones being Phoenix’s general manager and the one charged with negotiating a deal for Durant, his words on Brooklyn’s nonexistent intent to make a trade hold great significance.

If anything, this tidbit from Jones might allow Nets fans to trust the Brooklyn front office a bit more going forward—perhaps more than they have at any point since the 2021-22 season ended.

To be clear, letting things reach the point they did this summer with Durant was a failure in its own right, but at least the Nets realized that trading away the Slim Reaper would ultimately disable the franchise for years to come.

This truth is something Brooklyn’s front office needed to know at the jump, but for a time this summer, it did not feel this way. While a trade never materialized, ESPN’s Brain Windhorst endorsed Brooklyn’s intent to move on from the 7-Eleven era and willingly usher in another dark age for the franchise.

Thanks to Jones though, we know this was never an option. So while competency is never something that should be applauded, Nets fans can feel relieved to at least see it evident in the Brooklyn front office via this interview.

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With 34 days to go until the Nets 2022-23 season opener, Kevin Durant remains a Brooklyn Net. Nets fans can appreciate James Jones for whatever part he played in that, as well as these reassuring comments.