Atlantic Notes: Irving, Simmons, Brunson, Harris

Kevin Durant‘s desire to see the Nets get rid of general manager Sean Marks and head coach Steve Nash is shared by teammate Kyrie Irving, a source tells Mark W. Sanchez and Josh Koshman of The New York Post. Irving picked up his $36.9MM option and reportedly doesn’t mind playing in Brooklyn next season, but the source says he shares Durant’s views on the organization’s leadership.

“Kyrie Irving hates these guys. He feels that Nash is terrible and Marks is bad,” the source said, adding that “KD came to the same conclusion.”

Irving has more obvious reasons to hold a negative view of management than Durant does. The Nets were unwilling to offer him a long-term contract if he had opted out and they refused to allow him to be a part-time player last season when he was ineligible for home games because of his vaccine stance. That decision lasted until a short-handed roster forced them to change their minds in December.

There’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • Shams Charania of The Athletic disputes a rumor that Ben Simmons pulled out of a Nets group chat when teammates asked if he was going to play in Game 4 of the playoff series against the Celtics. Appearing on the Pat McAfee Show (video link), Charania said the incident “never happened” and added that Simmons is “looking good” this summer and the team has “high, high expectations” for him in the upcoming season.
  • A few New York fans got to see Jalen Brunson play his first game alongside some of his new Knicks teammates Monday, per Matthew Neschis of The New York Post. Brunson received a standing ovation during introductions as he teamed up with Julius Randle and Obi Toppin in the Nike Pro City playoffs, a summer league in the Bronx. “You have a lot of kids [here] who can’t afford the opportunity to go to a Knicks game,” league director Bernard Bowen said, “so for those guys to come and play in that atmosphere where it’s free for the kids, it’s a blessing.”
  • Kyle Neubeck of looks at the best-case and worst-case scenarios for Sixers forward Tobias Harris, who moved into a different role last season following the James Harden trade.
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