There’s already been a lot of chatter about Kevin Durant returning to his hometown in Prince George’s County Maryland to play with the Wizards when he’s a free agent in the summer of 2016. Now a person close to KD tells Frank Isola of the New York Daily News KD would be interested in playing for the Knicks. You read that right. The Big Apple team tied with the Sixers for the worst record in the Eastern Conference might have a chance to land KD — who didn’t play last night when the Knicks miraculously beat his Thunder 100-92.
Here’s Isola with what has to be the highlight of New York’s season so far:
Phil Jackson and the Knicks have until July 1, 2016 to get their house in order and here’s something Jackson and the legions of long-suffering Knicks fans — are there any other kind? — can latch onto: The Knicks are in play.
“No question about it,” says a person close to Durant. “Kevin loves Carmelo (Anthony). It could work in New York. But never rule out the Thunder.”
Durant…spent part of Wednesday’s pregame chatting with Anthony on the court. He is close to Derek Fisher, his former teammate, and admires Knicks executives Steve Mills and Allan Houston.
This isn’t exactly a bombshell, and we’re guessing other cities will publish pieces saying something similar. The fact Durant is still more than a year an and half away from actually becoming a free agent won’t dissuade rampant speculation, particularly if one of his contingent whisper an aside to a beat reporter about Durant’s future plans.
The Knicks would certainly have the money, with a lot of payroll coming off the books this summer (we’re looking at you Amar’e Stoudemire). But we’re not sure they’ll be in the championship conversation by the summer of 2016, or even if James Dolan can remain patient with Phil Jackson’s rebuilding plan and difficult to master triangle offense.
We doubt Durant even knows what he wants to do so far in the future, and we’re certain he doesn’t care right now. The Thunder are currently trying to scrape together a playoff berth after falling out of the top eight in the difficult Western Conference when KD and All-Star teammate Russell Westbrook both missed the first month of the season.
Durant has continued to battle the injury bug with a toe injury keeping him out last night. He’s expected to play against the Grizzlies on Saturday night, where there might be a report from an unnamed source he’s considering Memphis.
Right now, 30 teams have a chance of landing Kevin Durant in the summer of 2016, and we’re likely to hear talk about all of them participating in the KD sweepstakes over the next 18 months.
Is there any way KD lands in New York?
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