While the Phoenix Suns appear to have been the only team with a legitimate chance of trading for Kevin Durant at the trade deadline with what was described as “a covert one-team negotiation,” Bill Simmons shared on his podcast that he believes the New York Knicks were also in on a possible deal to at least some extent.
“I think the Knicks were the other team in this K.D. thing,” said Simmons. “It’s unclear to me whether they were an actual, real pursuer… Or, I know the Knicks were the other team. It’s unclear to me if they were a real pursuer, or if they were trying to jack up the price for K.D. with the Suns kind of hoping maybe Booker down the road…
“I think the Booker Knicks thing… just way down the road. He’s not a free agent until 2028, but if this turns into a situation where they have their run for three years and then it’s a rebuild and Devin Booker is like ‘Alright, well we had our run, we won our title, whatever.”
Simmons also said that the Knicks would have built their package around RJ Barrett, Obi Toppin and their full suite of draft picks.
“I do think the Knicks were involved,” punctuated Simmons.
Durant was strongly linked to the Knicks in 2019, but he and Kyrie Irving decided to sign with the Brooklyn Nets. With Durant situated in New York City already, he wouldn’t have had to uproot himself by going to the Knicks.
Other reporting has indicated that Durant preferred a trade to the Suns and was zeroed in on them.