Wizards

Wizards

Kevin Durant has only ever played in the Western Conference, so the Wizards haven't had to jockey with his teams for playoff positioning out East. That might not be the case after his free agency decision this summer, though.

In the latest report from Durant Sweepstakes 2.0, ESPN's Ian Begley reports that several of the 2014 MVP's current and former teammates expect him to sign with the New York Knicks. 

Some of Durant's former teammates think it's going to happen, per ESPN sources. Several of his current teammates have told friends that they think it's going to happen, sources said. Opposing agents believe it's a fait accompli: "Just a matter of putting pen to paper," is how one agent of another top free agent in the 2019 free-agent class put it.

Though the Wizards technically have the salary cap space to sign Durant, they have so many needs that the math is highly impractical. There's no evidence the Seat Pleasant native wants to return to his hometown team, either. 

Barring the extremely unlikely scenario that Durant lands in Washington, him playing in the East isn't great news for the Wizards. 

The conference is no longer the West's feeble kid sibling. Look no further than the Eastern Conference semifinal field: The Bucks, Raptors, Celtics and Sixers are led by some of the league's biggest stars. The void left by LeBron James' departure didn't take long to fill. 

 

Adding a two-time Finals MVP into the mix only makes the climb into East contention steeper for Washington. 

That said, Durant is hardly the biggest of the Wizards' worries.

How to navigate John Wall's Achilles injury, who to hire as general manager and what to do if Bradley Beal makes All-NBA are all more pressing concerns for Washington at the moment. 

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