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Kevin Durant staying in Brooklyn, RIP player empowerment era

Kevin Durant is staying put.

Kevin Durant is staying put.
Illustration: Getty Images

The Association’s red-hot summer of jack shit continues, with the crown jewel of the offseason — the true Petty King, Kevin Durant — appearing to be locked atop Brooklyn’s scepter.

In a tweet from the Nets’ official Twitter account, GM Sean Marks issued a statement saying he, Steve Nash, and owners Joe Tsai and Clara Wu Tsai met with Kevin Durant and his agent, Rich Kleiman, and that the group “agreed to move forward with our partnership.”

In an awakening akin to Kyrie Irving realizing his only choice was to opt into the final year of his deal because no team is paying top price for a guy who’s hard to work with, Durant discovered that his propensity for provocation, advanced age, and injury concerns were enough to make trade partners unwilling to pay the price Brooklyn was asking.

The catch with trying to move one of the best players in the league who’s under contract through the 2025-26 season is that GMs have every right to ask for landscape-altering assets. With his peers refusing to budge on Marks’ more-than-fair asking price, a stalemate was inevitable. KD doesn’t seem like the kind of player who would willingly dog it to regain leverage, or not hoop when he’s healthy. Regardless of the grim reality that comes with losing a season to injury, when a player believes that any team he’s on has a chance to win a title, he’s not going to resort to Ben Simmons or James Harden-ian antics.

The move was met with elation from Brooklyn’s 17 fans and contrived outrage from people who enjoy nothing more than getting mad at Durant.

Because Patrick Beverly sees an avenue to being more relevant than he ever is/was as a player ala Kendrick Perkins, he felt the need to comment on the news. And whatever Beverly said, which I’m still trying to figure out, Durant’s first tweet since the “story” broke was to respond with #BLAMEKD.

It immediately started trending with users blaming KD for everything from Tua throwing a pick to Desus and Mero never podcasting again to a 30-minute wait for Popeye’s. Durant’s social media-induced persecution complex is certainly a self-fulfilling prophecy — the man could find a hater at a support group — and I’m sure there’s someone out there blaming him for something.

Speaking of which, I’d also like to note that self-proclaimed player-GM Irving was left out of the meeting between the team and the Boardroom. That doesn’t tell sane people anything they don’t already know, but it is an overt hint to Irving that he’s delusional. Whatever figment of his imagination he scapegoats for whatever it is he’s constantly upset about, Kyrie has experienced more than enough real slights this offseason to knock his chakras off kilter.

Who knows what Simmons thought about Durant’s rescinded trade request or being omitted from the summit. Honestly, he was probably happy that he didn’t have to do anything.

Even though Durant seems like a guy who just wants to hoop, he also seems like the kind of person who would be unapologetic about being an asshole. I know NBA Twitter wanted a brain-melting trade because that’s the only pure fix, but it’ll have to settle for the ensuing drama that leaks from that locker room.

If the royal you thinks this is the last we’ll hear out of Brooklyn because coach, owners, GM, player, and agent sang kumbaya over a bottle of sauv blanc and tuna tartare in Malibu then you clearly haven’t followed KD and Irving’s careers.

However, if you know that, and are complaining that KD-Kyrie spats don’t even dilate your eyes anymore, then you have a real problem and should seek professional help. Or just #BLAMEKD.

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