It’s no secret that the New York Knicks want to sign multiple stars this summer.
And, if Kevin Durant is available, the Knicks would gladly welcome him into Madison Square Garden with open arms.
They don’t, however, want to be too obvious about that fact too soon.
The Knicks, in an advertisement asking season ticket holders to renew their tickets, used a picture of Durant guarding rookie forward Mitchell Robinson this week.
— Paul (@Paul_HQ) February 10, 2019
Upon realizing Durant was in the photo, the team took it down as a precaution, they said in a statement — even though it was one of many used on its website.
“Game action photos are used all the time for marketing purposes, but given everything going on, we took precaution of taking the photo down,” the Knicks said in a statement, via Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News. “To be clear, it was one of several rotating photos on the website.”
Durant is averaging 27.3 points, 7.1 rebounds and six assists for Golden State so far this season, his third with the team. He signed a two year, $61.5 million deal with the Warriors last season that comes with a player option, which many expect he will opt-out of and become a free agent again this summer.
The Knicks, after trading away Kristaps Porzingis to the Dallas Mavericks and waiving Enes Kanter, will have two spots on its roster available to offer players max deals this summer. And by getting rid of Porzingis, a player many expected them to build the franchise around, the Knicks have apparently gone all in on landing a pair of big stars next season — which, paired with a top draft pick, could make the Knicks a true powerhouse in the Eastern Conference.
It doesn’t have to be Durant, however. The team will likely attempt to sign any combination of Durant, Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Leonard, Jimmy Butler or Klay Thompson — all who will become free agents this summer.
Yet despite the constant talk connecting him with the Knicks, Durant wants nothing to do with it — at least for now.
“I have nothing to do with the Knicks,” Durant said in a lengthy rant directed at the media last week. “I don’t know who traded [Kristaps] Porzingis. They’ve got nothing to do with me. I’m trying to play basketball. Y’all come in here every day, ask me about free agency, ask my teammates, my coaches, rile up the fans about it. Let us play basketball, that’s all I’m saying.”
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