Did David Stern fix the 1985 Draft so the Knicks could draft Patrick Ewing? Was Michael Jordan’s first retirement a secret suspension? Will Kevin Durant play during the 2019-2020 NBA season? These are some of the biggest mysteries in the NBA.
The Brooklyn Nets had an offseason for the ages when they acquired Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. This same team once traded three first-round draft picks to acquire 37-year-old Kevin Garnett and 36-year-old Paul Pierce. By their standards, 2019 was the best offseason in Brooklyn history. However, the bar is pretty low.
Since the 2007-2008 season, the Nets have only made the playoffs four times. They haven’t gotten past the second round of the playoffs since the 2002-2003 season when they lost the NBA Finals to the San Antonio Spurs. The Nets are not a franchise that strikes fear into the hearts of the NBA.
From 2015-2018, the Nets won a total of 69 games (23 wins a season), before going 42-40 during the 2018-2019 season. After being the worst team in the NBA for a couple of years, the Nets managed to grab the 6th seed in the Eastern Conference last season. However, they lost in the first round to the Philadelphia 76ers.
While the Nets had to give up their best player D’Angelo Russell to acquire Durant, what drew Durant and Irving to the Nets is their roster of quality young players. Jarrett Allen, Spencer Dinwiddie, Caris LeVert, and Joe Harris have all only been in the league for four seasons or less, and have all proved to be capable of being pieces for a contending Nets team. Durant and Irving are joining a deep roster with a lot of young talent, and if KD can come back from injury true to form, this Nets team has a chance to be really special.
But, again, the question needs to be asked- will Kevin Durant play during the 2019-2020 season? A torn Achilles is a gruesome injury (just ask DeMarcus Cousins) which could keep Durant out for the entire season, plus could prevent him from ever returning to his previous level of play. If there’s one thing we can say for sure, the return of Kevin Durant is going to be one of the biggest storylines in the NBA over the next calendar year.
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Image Source: AP Images