The Brooklyn Nets had the biggest summer of any team in the Eastern Conference and likely in the entire league outside of the Clippers. Last year’s pleasant surprise in the East became a soon-to-be contender for the Finals by bringing in Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant.
The Nets managed to accomplish what many had initially thought the Knicks might be able to do, and once Durant is fully healthy in 2020, the expectation is for them to join the Bucks and Sixers at the top of the Eastern Conference. Much has been made about how the Nets managed to do what the Knicks couldn’t, and how their success last year helped cement the idea of joining forces there for Irving and KD.
Free agency decisions aren’t made in a day or week, but are part of a much longer process, even if players insist they aren’t thinking about it during the season. Durant and Irving both deflected free agency questions during the year, as most players do, insisting the full focus was on the task at hand in Golden State and Boston respectively. Anyone that fully believed that should also look into beachfront property in Kansas, but the extent to which background was done by those players — or, at the least Kyrie — may surprise those that even expected them to be surveying their options.
As Spencer Dinwiddie told Shams Charania on The Athletic, he first talked about free agency — in very broad terms — back in December with Irving, and recognized then it was a very real possibility he’d come to New York, although Dinwiddie at first expected it to be the Knicks.