Rumors of a potential Boston Celtics-Brooklyn Nets trade involving Jaylen Brown and Kevin Durant have dominated the NBA offseason. On Tuesday, all of that speculation was finally put to rest.
The Nets announced Durant and the team "have agreed to move forward with our partnership." That all but guarantees Brown will enter his seventh NBA season as a Celtic.
With the trade talk in the rearview, C's president Brad Stevens addressed the Durant rumors for the first time while appearing on WEEI's Jimmy Fund Radio-Telethon.
“Listen, at the end of the day I’m not going to go into any conversations that we had because I don’t think that’s appropriate," Stevens said. "But my job is to know what costs are and then ultimately determine whether or not we want to be involved in any deal with any team around the league.
“Since the (Malcolm) Brogdon trade, we felt really good about our team. We felt really good about building around these guys that we’ve been building around, trying to accentuate our best players. We’re excited to move forward with our team and that’s really been our focus for a while.
"You say it’s been busy and there’s been a lot of talk but it hasn’t been from me. Hopefully, it gave everyone something to talk about. It’s been pretty quiet on our front for a while now.”
Brown appeared miffed about the trade rumors when they surfaced back in July. The All-Star tweeted "smh" (shaking my head)" shortly after it was reported Brown was offered as the centerpiece of a potential Durant deal.
Stevens was asked whether he kept in contact with Brown throughout the process.
“Of course," he answered. "Jaylen’s been through this from the standpoint of listening and the noise has been around him for a long time, big names over the years. I think one of the things you have to be able to do is ignore the noise and know what’s important. Also, be able to reach out and have candid and transparent communications with the people involved.
"We’ve had those and been very open from the get-go as all of this has been going on for any of our guys. I sat down with Jaylen last week in LA. He looked great and he will be back to Boston soon.”
Now that the Durant circus is over, the Celtics can focus on the intriguing group they assembled over the summer. Brogdon and Danilo Gallinari were the major offseason additions to a team that will look to get over the hump and bring Banner 18 back to Boston in 2023. Brown and Jayson Tatum will return as one of the best tandems in the NBA.