Kevin Durant’s manager Rich Kleiman calls it’s ‘unrealistic’ Durant returns this season
One person and one person alone will decide when Kevin Durant makes his debut in a Brooklyn Nets uniform.
In a sign of the power structure in both Brooklyn and the NBA right now, Nets GM Sean Marks recently told media in his native New Zealand he could not rule out Durant returning. Which is true, it’s ultimately not his call. If Durant wants to return, it is Marks’ job to hold the door open for him.
That doesn’t mean Durant is returning. Durant’s business partner and manager Rich Kleiman reiterated on SiriusXM NBA Radio with hosts Frank Isola and Wes Wilcox that it is “unrealistic” to expect Durant to return.
Kleiman notes it’s hard even to have a realistic conversation about this because the format of an NBA return — if it happens — has yet to be set.
There is little logic in a Durant return this season from the perspective of Durant or the Nets. If the NBA returns there will be a three-of-four week training camp to ramp things up, however, after that Durant’s first action after missing a year of basketball due to a torn Achilles would be a playoff game, or at best a very condensed end to the regular season with games right on top of each other. That invites injury. Second, the current seven-seed Nets have not had Durant on the floor to develop any chemistry with Irving, Joe Harris, Spencer Dinwiddie, and the rest of the team. There would be rough patches as they learned on the fly, and right now Brooklyn would play a Toronto team (the two seed) who knows exactly who it is and what they want to do. That’s a lot to ask of Durant in a return.
Kleiman did say exactly what a friend/manager should say: When Durant returns expect him to be better than ever.
Just don’t expect that this season.