After every NBA season, the “legacy” debate on various star players reigns down from hot take artists and fans on social media.
Even though he wasn’t playing in the Finals, Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant finds himself roped into the conversation after his former Warriors teammates won the NBA title on Thursday night, their fourth overall and first since he left after the 2019 season.
While Steph Curry was coronated with his spectacular run en route to winning his first Finals MVP award, some posited how this would impact Durant, believing that his legacy was hurt by Golden State winning after his departure (while he has yet to reach the conference finals with Brooklyn).
Durant responded to a couple of fans on Twitter on Friday and acknowledged the Warriors’ title while seeming unbothered by any legacy talk.
While it’s human to look back at what could have been, all signs indicate Durant is happy with his decision to pursue something different with the Nets, even signing a contract extension tying him to Brooklyn through the 2025-26 season.
But that won’t stop the dialogue. The Ringer’s Bill Simmons said that Curry has now surpassed Durant on his all-time list after the Warriors star won his first Finals MVP trophy, while Fox Sports analyst Nick Wright posited before the Finals began that a Warriors title would hurt KD’s legacy.
“I don't think it's picking on Durant to say if this core, Steph [Curry], Klay [Thompson], Draymond [Green], won a title before him and now they are back in the Finals in the same year Durant loses in Round 1 and the only team swept in these whole playoffs, one could say these playoffs went as poorly as possible for Durant's legacy. I think that's right,” Wright said back on May 27.
Draymond Green even couldn’t help but poke some fun at Durant, cryptically mocking one of KD’s tweets from Game 1 of the Finals.
While all of this is admittedly silly, Durant is woven into the fabric of this era of Warriors basketball and how both sides do apart from one another will continue to be talked about ad nauseam.