Nets' Kevin Durant Says the 'Cool Thing Right Now Is Not the Knicks'

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistOctober 8, 2019

BROOKLYN, NY - SEPTEMBER 27: Kevin Durant #7 of the Brooklyn Nets poses for a portrait during media day on September 27, 2019 at the HSS Training Center in Brooklyn, New York. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
Nathaniel S. Butler/Getty Images

Kevin Durant apparently isn't done rubbing salt in the wounds of New York Knicks fans. The Brooklyn Nets forward appeared on Ebro in the Morning on Tuesday, highlighting how some younger players don't see the Knicks as a strong brand. 

"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. That whole brand of the Knicks to them is not as cool as let's say the Golden State Warriors or even the Lakers or the Nets now. The cool thing right now is not the Knicks."

Durant and Kyrie Irving were linked to the Knicks throughout last season, but the rumors proved false. Neither Durant nor Irving appeared to seriously consider the Knicks and signed with the crosstown Nets in what could be seen as a paradigm shift in New York basketball.

The Knicks have made the playoffs just six times since they reached the 1999 NBA Finals. They've gotten past the first round twice during that time frame and have been among the NBA's most mismanaged, woebegone franchises for the better part of two decades. Team governor James Dolan has been criticized for being one of the worst at running a franchise in professional sports.

Durant said his team came away impressed with the Nets' basketball operation, which was a major reason he signed in Brooklyn. He told reporters:

"We know basketball pretty well, and it's really easy to see what these guys brought to the table. It's not like I had to do any deep analysis of any player here. Just watching games and playing against them and seeing the continuity throughout the last couple of years, it was pretty easy to figure out what kind of team and what kind of organization this place is."

The Knicks responded to losing out on Durant and Irving by signing Julius Randle, Marcus Morris, Bobby Portis and Taj Gibson. Their roster is again expected to rank among the Eastern Conference's worst, while the Nets are considered a borderline lock for the playoffs—even with Durant out for the entire season as he recovers from an Achilles rupture. 

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