“James Harden was there because of Kevin Durant” – Stephen A. Smith sounds off on Kevin Durant’s comments on Nets’ chemistry last season

Kevin Durant spoke about his trade request and subsequent revocation of the same at the Brooklyn Nets’ media day today. On that, ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith said that Durant’s comments on the Nets’ chemistry last season and his trade request make no sense to him. He also claimed that James Harden was there because of him.


Durant chalked up his initial trade request to the uncertainty around the future of the Nets, given their poor last season. He also said that he liked the pieces the Nets have assembled around him and that the owners and head coach have decided to move forward.

Following Durant’s press conference, Stephen A. Smith, on ESPN’s “First Take,” claimed his comments made no sense. He said:

“Makes no sense to me. The bottom line is that the Brooklyn Nets team, that Kevin Durant had an issue with, he accepted that they would not have done any of it without his OK, Kyrie is there because of Kevin Durant. James Harden was there because of Kevin Durant.

“And then when they made it clear that they were not going to give Kyrie Irving a full four year, $212 million extension, that was when Kevin Durant asked to be traded shortly thereafter. So my whole point is that it’s his team. I’m happy to see him there.


He continued:

“But what he was saying there really, really made no sense because he was acting like it was something that had nothing to do with him and it had everything to do with him.”

Media day highlights: Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving both point to uncertainty, Simmons ready to go

Brooklyn Nets v Boston Celtics - Game One
Brooklyn Nets v Boston Celtics – Game One

After months of speculation and commotion around the Brooklyn Nets, Durant, Irving and Ben Simmons, the “Big 3” in Brooklyn, all addressed the media for the first time as teammates.

Durant and Irving separately addressed the former’s trade request, and both mentioned uncertainty within the organization as the primary reason for the request.

Irving stated that the sheer amount of noise and narratives made it difficult to address any questions, and called the entire situation a “clusterf**k.”

Simmons, who formally addressed the media for the first time since 2021, gave confirmation on his health status and that he was cleared for training camp. Simmons also said that him, Irving and Durant played together all week and that the experience was incredible.

The Nets play their first game of the 2022-23 NBA preseason on Oct. 4, against the Philadelphia 76ers at home.

Edited by Gautam Aggarwal

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