Even with the Nets back on the court for the first day of training camp, the drama that occurred over the summer is still around the organization.
Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and Ben Simmons were all back in Nets black and white on Tuesday, but questions still remained as Steve Nash prepared to lead one of the biggest names in basketball after he had called for Nash’s job over the summer.
The Nets head coach told reporters at the team’s Sunset Park practice facility that things between him and Durant were “good.”
“Ever since we’ve talked it’s like nothing’s changed,” Nash said. “I have a long history with Kevin and I love the guy. Families have issues. We had a moment and it’s behind us. That’s what happens and it’s a common situation in the league. We were all hurting, seething to go through what we went through last year not being able to overcome all the adversity. Sometimes you lose perspective because you expect to win.
“We were able to talk and discuss what we can improve on from last year and also keep perspective. We went through a ton of stuff.”
The Nets had been eliminated from the playoffs in the first round by the Boston Celtics after what had been a chaotic regular season filled with injuries and drama surrounding Kyrie Irving’s vaccination status. COVID also threw a wrench in the season in December when a league-wide outbreak occurred.
All of that set up what became an equally dramatic offseason, which culminated with a trade request by Durant and reports that he called for the ousting of Nash and general manager Sean Marks. Nash also suggested that the reporting around Durant’s ultimatum wasn’t completely accurate.
“It’s not black and white like that. There’s a lot of factors, a lot of things behind the scenes,” Nash said. “A lot of things reported are not accurate. A lot of things reported are not 100% accurate, so you get fragmented bits of truth. You get things that are flat-out not true. It happens, it’s the nature of the media these days. … I never really get caught up in all that stuff.
“I’m gonna hear it from Kevin and when the time is right I’m going to talk to Sean. I’m going to talk to all the parties involved. You just work through it step by step. You don’t overreact, we stay calm and work on communication and fact, and here we are.”
Nash didn’t want to relitigate what was reported that may have been incorrect, but mentioned that he would hear things from people that he said weren’t accurate. He did call the meeting in Los Angeles, which eventually convinced Durant to return to the organization, an opportunity to clear the air and one that helped everyone get to the bottom of the issues.
Even with the team trying to move forward from the offseason, the Nets are still viewed as one of the favorites to win a title this season. A lot of that has to do with Durant’s decision to return to Brooklyn this season and Kyrie Irving still being with the organization.
“We have two of the best players in the world. That’s all the ingredients you need to put around some guys that’s going to buy in and we right there,” new Net Markieff Morris said.
For more Nets coverage, visit amNY.com and our affiliate site at TheBrooklynGame.com
Asked about how the situation in Brooklyn impacted his decision to sign with the Nets, Morris gave a unique perspective on the drama.
“That’s the NBA man. You break up with a girlfriend you get back with her, same s–t,” Morris said. “Broke up with my wife a couple of times and we still married. It works, but sometimes you need space to figure some things out. (It) works, you know it is what it is.”