Kevin Durant is reportedly in New York for meetings —and maybe even surgery— with Dr. Martin O’Malley at the Hospital for Special Surgery. Perhaps the most reknowned foot and ankle surgeon, he’s also the Nets foot/ankle specialist. He is very familiar with Durant. He performed foot surgery on the KD in 2015.
Among those reporting that news is our own Anthony Puccio who tweeted this out Tuesday night...
I’m told Kevin Durant’s injury unlikely to impact Brooklyn’s pursuit of him. #Nets— Anthony Puccio (@APOOCH) June 12, 2019
Without specifically mentioning the Nets by name, both Bobby Marks and David Aldridge confirmed the continuing interest around the league.
Bobby Marks on ESPN Tuesday morning said that he had spoken with representatives of four NBA teams asking if they would still sign KD. Marks said before he could get the question out, “The resounding answer was ‘yes’”
“Each of the teams also said that they wouldn’t even put any injury language in there for maybe years three and four to protect,” added the Nets former assistant GM.
Aldridge wrote of the specific interest of teams in New York and L.A.
League sources Tuesday made it plain: Durant’s injury, whether short-term or longer, has done little to cool the ardor of his most dogged free agent pursuers. The likelihood remains that all of the New York/L.A. teams will stay in the hunt for Durant beginning on the afternoon of June 30.
However, Adrian Wojnarowski noted on ESPN’s Golic and Wingo that Durant’s injury is most likely going to affect Kyrie Irving’s decision.
“I think the one player it really impacts is Kyrie Irving,” said Woj. “because both the Knicks and the Nets hoped that Kyrie and KD could be a package deal, that they could sign them. Both [teams] are in a position to sign them. And Kyrie Irving certainly has a significant interest in being back in New York. If he leaves Boston, that’s the top of his list and he, I’ve been told, is really focused on Brooklyn if he was to sign with one of the New York teams.
“So now the question is, for the Nets, for the Knicks, is would you sign Kyrie Irving as a solo act or would Kevin Durant want to come and essentially be a red shirt.”
Woj was asked if the Nets land Kyrie and KD, would it make them “a championship contending team?”
“It does,” Woj responded. “Look at the infrastructure in Brooklyn. Caris LeVert, Spencer Dinwiddie, If you’re Kyrie Irving and you know you might miss some regular season games, might not play all 82, you got a point guard who can come in ...
“You’ve got an infrastructure of young players, developing talent. You have a GM in Sean Marks and Kenny Atkinson who have a real good track record in Brooklyn.”
The Nets may also very well be part of the Anthony Davis trade discussions. New Orleans is engaged with multiple teams and wants to conclude a deal well before Draft Day, now eight days away, Woj also said Tuesday. No names, the Nets did talk to Pelicans EVP David Griffin.
Rodions Kurucs, who’s in Latvia (with Kristaps Porzingis) at Basketball Without Borders, told Brian Lewis that he’s confident the Nets will get a big free agent.
“We have two spaces for two max deals, right? So, I mean they will definitely add some star and for sure will make the team bigger and better,” Kurucs told The Post. “I hope he will teach us young guys some things what he has been through, and tell some stories we can learn from. That will definitely just be better for our team.”
“Definitely,” Pablo Prigioni, who’s also in Latvia, told The Post. “Definitely that first part, like three years ago when Sean and Kenny [Atkinson] jumped into the organization, the team was in a different spot than it is right now in that time. Nobody wanted to go there.
“Now there’s a lot of good free agents that are considering the Nets as an option. So I hope they are lucky on that part and those free agents decide to choose Brooklyn.”
- Answering the questions created by Kevin Durant’s injury - David Aldridge - The Athletic
- Irving? Butler? The Nets’ plan everyone ‘definitely’ believes - Brian Lewis - New York Post