Kevin Durant explained why he requested trade from the Brooklyn Nets this offseason.
After a meeting with Tsai, Nash and Marks, Durant decided to remain in Brooklyn where he signed a four-year contract in 2021.
Per ESPN (via RealGM), “There was a lot of uncertainty around our team last year,” Durant said. “I committed to this organization for four years last summer with the idea we were gonna play with that group that we kind of went on that little run to the second round [in the 2020 playoffs]. I felt like another year of that, us being healthy — we were building something towards the future.
“Then as the season went on, you seen what happened with our season, guys in and out of the lineup, injuries, just a lot of uncertainty, which built some doubt in my mind about the next four years in my career. I mean, I’m getting older and I want to be in a place that’s stable and trying to build a championship culture. So I had some doubts about that. I voiced them to [owner] Joe [Tsai], and we moved forward from there.”
Durant said he wasn’t “disappointed” or surprised that he was still in Brooklyn.
“No,” Durant said. “I know I’m that good that you’re just not going to give me away. So that’s one thing I did appreciate about Sean and Joe [they said]. ‘You’re too great for us to give you away.’ Just that easy, that simple. So, I get that. I know who I am.”
Durant said the Nets could have fought harder through adversity down the stretch of last season when he was out with an injury, noting that that’s what championship-caliber teams do.
“When I went out with the injury, we lost  in a row,” he said. “And I’m like we shouldn’t be losing some of these games that we lost, regardless of who’s on the floor. So I was more so worried about how we’re approaching every day as a basketball team. And I felt like we could have fought through a lot of stuff that I felt held us back. Championship teams do that. You’ve seen Steph Curry and the Warriors, he was injured going into the playoffs. Their team still fought and won games. Luka [Doncic], he was hurt and their team still fought and won games.
“I felt like we had enough talent to do that. And that’s what was the most about in my mind is that when adversity hit can we keep pushing through it? I’ve been on championship teams, I’ve been on teams that have been right at the brink of winning a championship, and they did those things. So I wanted to be a part of a group that did that.
“Winning and losing, I could take all that. I’ve been in the league for a long time. So it’s not more so about just a result. It’s how we get to that point. And I wasn’t feeling how we were getting to that point. I didn’t want it to affect the game so I waited to the offseason to tell people how I felt.”