Kevin Durant said again this week that he had no intention of joining the Knicks as a free agent last summer, relays Marc Berman of The New York Post. Appearing on J.J. Redick‘s podcast, Durant said he welcomed a more comfortable situation with the Nets rather than trying to turn around a downtrodden franchise.
“Around February (2019) I was thinking I didn’t want to be the savior of the Knicks or New York,’’ Durant said. “That never really moved me. I didn’t care about being on Broadway. I just want to play ball and go to the crib and chill. So I felt like that’s what Brooklyn embodied. And I wanted to live in New York. And I felt like Brooklyn is everything I’m about — chill, on the low, all-black everything, we’re quiet. Just focus on basketball. There’s no show when you come to our games. No Madison Square, no mecca. … We’re just going to hoop and build something new in Brooklyn.”
Durant noticed the hype about him coming to the Knicks, especially after New York traded Kristaps Porzingis to Dallas in a deal that cleared enough cap space for two maximum contracts. Sources say Rich Kleiman, who serves as Durant’s manager and agent, supported the idea of Durant joining the Knicks but wasn’t able to convince him.
“I never planned on going to the Knicks,’’ Durant said. “That was just the media putting that out there, especially when I didn’t sign a three-year deal (as a free agent in 2018). Once I signed a (one-year deal), just the noise got louder about me going to the Knicks for some reason. Knicks being the savior, you know how that goes. Every time a big free agent is up, the Knicks are going to get him. So it just took off.”
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