Durant: Knicks “Not As Cool” To Younger Players

Appearing on Ebro in the Morning on Hot 97 in New York on Tuesday morning, Kevin Durant was asked whether he considered the Knicks in free agency before signing with the Nets. While Durant acknowledged that he thought about the Knicks, he clarified that it was “just a thought” and that he didn’t do a “full analysis” on the franchise (link via ESPN.com).

More interestingly, Durant also offered his opinion on the Knicks’ brand in general, attempting to explain why the team hasn’t received serious consideration from star free agents in recent years.

“I think a lot of fans look at the Knicks as a brand and expect these younger players who, in their lifetime, don’t remember the Knicks being good,” Durant said. “I’ve seen the Knicks in the Finals, but kids coming up after me didn’t see that. So that whole brand of the Knicks is not as cool as let’s say the Golden State Warriors, or even the Lakers or the Nets now. You know what I’m saying; the cool thing now is not the Knicks.”

The Knicks created enough cap room for two maximum-salary slots heading into the 2019 free agent period and owner James Dolan expressed confidence in the spring that the team would have a highly successful free agent period. Instead, New York missed out on its top targets and ended up signing second- or third-tier free agents such as Julius Randle, Bobby Portis, Marcus Morris, Elfrid Payton, and Taj Gibson.

Durant and Kyrie Irving were thought to be at the top of the Knicks’ wish list, but chose to join the crosstown Nets instead. Asked today if Dolan’s comments were a turnoff to him and Irving, Durant dismissed that idea, saying that he didn’t think either he or Kyrie heard them to begin with, per Ian Begley of SNY.tv.

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38 thoughts on “Durant: Knicks “Not As Cool” To Younger Players

  1. realistnotsucker

    What’s cool about being the second team in NYC? You’ll never run the city

    • I give no fox

      What’s cool about playing for the lifeless Knicks? Brooklyn is way cooler than Manhattan

      • emac22

        I don’t think the knicks are running out to tell reporters how cool they are while they sit on the bench

      • Though I’m a Brooklyn boy, Manhattan is cooler. As are the Knicks. And the Garden. NYC will always be the Knicks.

      • andremets

        Nets have been just as bad just as long as the Knicks. They made one of the most shortsighted awful deals for Garnett in NBA history. One .500 season does not make you cool. And I think they will regret ditching DLO for Irving who is a cancer.

    • What’s cool about it is that they will be able to win, possibly a championship. While the knicks will be lucky if they can manage to make the playoffs in the next twenty years.

      • harden-westbrook-mvps

        The Nets need to win 50 games if they want to have any realistic chance of winning a championship. Just look at what’s going on with the Cleveland Browns (the Nets of the NFL) right now.

  2. emac22

    Playing with Kyrie and Jordan while Durant cheers from the bench is what the cool kids want to do?

    This sounds like a less than typical old guy take.

    I’m thinking more grandpa’s than kids watch the nets.

    Maybe a few bankers.

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      And all of the poor fools who threw away their money betting on the Nets’ ridiculous odds on winning a championship at 40-1.

  3. emac22

    I’m thinking a suite for Durant with an umbrella, lawnchair, sunglasses and some lemonade would be a really cool look during games.

  4. yaniwox

    His point is true. The youngest players in the NBA were not alive during the Knicks run of the 90’s.

    • ChiSoxCity

      Wouldn’t that apply to the Nets as well? Nothing dope about that franchise, other than Jay-Z’s involvement in moving them to Brooklyn. Nobody under 40 cares about Jay-Z either.

        • ChiSoxCity

          What’s dope about the Nets?

          I guess it’s hard to fathom that young people don’t listen to 45-50 year old rappers. Hip-Hop culture is dead. Jay-Z, Nas, WuTang, etc. is considered old.

          • SuperSinker

            I’m a millennial who feasts on 90’s rap. Illmatic will always be insane.

            • ChiSoxCity

              You’re an outlier. And of course Illmatic is insane. The music industry had done everything it can to destroy hip-hop, urban music in general. Today’s urban music is trash, so they’ve succeeded for the most part. But I digress.

              How are the Brooklyn Niets any cooler than the Knicks? Durant’s reasoning for his decisions, like most of the NBA of this generation, make absolutely no sense. If he would have just said he went there for shock value to create chaos and thumb his nose at the system, I would have more respect for him.

              • Iago407

                If you’re a younger player and you have a chance to play for an old rapper you’ve never heard of (which still seems unlikely to me) or James Dolan, you’re choosing the old rapper 10 times out of 10.

  5. harden-westbrook-mvps

    I remember the one time the Nets were good and actually won 50 games, which was their lone 50-win season in the NBA (over 43 years). Now people are acting like this team is a serious contender? Pathetic. At least the Clippers have a realistic chance of winning a title and being taken seriously in their own city, unlike the poor Nets.

    • JamesW26

      Four division titles and two conference titles in 5 years is a pretty darn good run. They didn’t win a title, but the Jason Kidd-era Nets played very exciting team basketball. Getting to 50 wins in a season isn’t the only indicator of being a good team.

        • IslandFlava

          Many teams have gotten to the finals & even won with below 50 games won, is a ridiculous comment, for example the Knicks got to the 99 finals been the #8 seed in the EC & there are many more.

    • x%sure

      The Nets went to back-to-back finals, and were the last NY team there. 2 or 3 times on this page you dis them, we get it, you don’t like them. Though I would not take take that 40-1 either… Durant might come back this year but they’re still too newly joined.

      The popularity contest in NY between BRK & NYK really doesn’t matter elsewhere. At least the Nets don’t follow the Knicks around like the Clips plopping down where the Lakers are.

      • That’s because the Nets have been outcasts their entire existence – Long Island, New Jersey twice, and now Brooklyn.

  6. Down with OBP

    Lol. Durant keeps sounding like he definitely didn’t collude or talk with Iriving or anything before he signed with the Nets. Wink wink

  7. dynasty in boston

    Knicks should be overjoyed that they did NOT sign Kaylee Irving. His talent is overshadowed by his lack of intestinal fortitude. He’ll fold when the pressure mounts and losses pile up.

    As for Durant, who knows when/if he’ll emerge as the same player. By July 2020, Knicks will be only too happy that these 2 players chose the path they did. And I’m not a Knicks fan.

    • andremets

      And Nets will still finish in 3rd or 4th place in their own division this year behind Boston, Philly and possibly Toronto.

      • IslandFlava

        Well they were never gonna win it even with a healthy KD, not as long as Philly is there… but even without KD they can very well end up #2 still they can easily be better than Toronto & Boston, come on that is easy dude.

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      We’ll see what happens next July, maybe the Knicks will sign AD.

  8. KD Is the same guy Who signed for the warriors After the okc loss, went to Champions to win…
    Good guy, he knows what challenges are.
    This Is the real loser

  9. KD Is the same guy Who signed for the warriors After the okc loss, went to Champions to win…
    Good guy, he knows what challenges are.
    This is a real loser

    • dynasty in boston

      I agree. No mental toughness whatsoever. Today’s players are talented but most fixated on stat lines. KD is used to having things handed to him (unlike D Green).

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