If Patrick Beverley needed to find extra motivation to increase his intensity level on the court, Kevin Durant appears to have provided it for him.
After the Brooklyn Nets announced Durant has agreed to rescind his trade request to remain with the club, Beverley tweeted about how free agents who have been looking for a new home have essentially been held up for two months while this situation worked itself out.
Durant was alerted to Beverley's tweet and responded with a new hashtag:
Following Durant's response, Beverley clarified he was talking about how the situation played out publicly and not solely about the 12-time All-Star:
Durant and Beverley aren't strangers to each other, both on the court and online. They have gone head-to-head in the playoffs once after the 2012-13 season when Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder defeated Beverley and the Houston Rockets in five games.
Beverley drew the ire of several NBA players after criticizing Chris Paul's defense during an appearance on ESPN's Get Up in the wake of the Phoenix Suns' Game 7 loss to the Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference semifinals.
NBA on ESPN @ESPNNBA
.<a href="https://twitter.com/patbev21?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@patbev21</a> says the Suns should've benched Chris Paul instead of Deandre Ayton 👀<br><br>"They benched the wrong person. They should've benched Chris."<br><br>(via <a href="https://twitter.com/GetUpESPN?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@GetUpESPN</a>) <a href="https://t.co/wjMBWVybRV">pic.twitter.com/wjMBWVybRV</a>
Durant was one of the players who posted a response to those comments on Twitter:
In response to one person saying "role players talking like all stars," Durant added, "these guys need to stop."
Durant's teams have an 8-5 edge over Beverley in their 13 head-to-head meetings. The 12-time All-Star has averaged 29.4 points, 8.7 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game in those contests. He's also shooting 50.6 percent from the field (39.3 percent from three).
They haven't played against each other since Jan. 18, 2019, when the Golden State Warriors defeated the Los Angeles Clippers, 112-94.
Beverley is currently playing for the Utah Jazz, but he could be an attractive trade piece at some point with a one-year, $13 million contract for 2022-23.
If the Jazz elect to hang on to Beverley going into the season, their first game against the Nets will take place on Jan. 20 at Vivint Arena. They also play at Barclays Center in the final week of the regular season on April 2.