Kevin Durant Who Lobbied for Steve Nash’s Firing During the Offseason, Was “Shocked” by the Move

Kevin Durant, a star player for the Brooklyn Nets, said he was “shocked” when he heard that former head coach Steve Nash was leaving. He found out about the news on Tuesday afternoon when he turned on the TV after waking up from a nap before a game. After a frustrating and chaotic start to the season, Nash and the team both agreed that it was time to part ways.

“You’re always shocked when a move like this happens,” Durant said after the Nets’ loss to the Chicago Bulls on Tuesday, which dropped them to 2-6 on the season. “But it’s normal in the NBA. So it’s about getting ready for the game tonight. It’s a quick turnaround always in the league, especially during the season. You got practise, games coming up, so you can’t think too much about it. But it was on the mind for a little bit today.”

Durant said that “a lot of things” led to Nash leaving the team. “We didn’t have a healthy team. Just didn’t pay well. And that’s what happens in the league. Shit happens. So that doesn’t take away from Steve’s basketball IQ, how he teaches the game. I don’t think that takes away from anything. It just didn’t work out.”

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Even though it would be a bit shocking to wake up from a nap and find out that your coach of two and a half years is gone, the move probably didn’t come as much of a shock to Durant given the whole situation. On and off the court, the team has been a mess. Nash called their loss to the Pacers earlier this week a “disaster,” and Marks said that he and Nash had been talking about the latter’s future with the team for more than a week.

Durant himself acknowledged the reality of the situation: “Let’s be real. We’re pros. We’re veterans. We had a tough start. It was a rocky year last year, rocky summer. We knew that everybody was being evaluated. That’s just how it is in the league.”

Plus, there were Durant’s moves outside of the season. When his trade request didn’t go as planned and he was still on the team’s roster well into the summer, Durant gave the team an ultimatum to try to speed up the process. He told them they had to choose between him or the brain trust of Nash and Marks. The Nets wouldn’t budge, and Durant ended up coming back to Brooklyn, but his call to fire the head coach and general manager was something that wouldn’t be easy to forget.

Marks said on Tuesday that part of the reason Nash decided to leave was because his old coach told him, “They’re not responding to me right now.” There’s no one reason why a coach loses his team, and Marks said, “There was no input from any of the players on this,” but Durant calling for Nash’s job in the summer couldn’t have helped.

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