If there's one thing retired NBA legends criticize this current generation about the most, it's their fondness for moving from one team to another and teaming up with other superstars. Because truth to be told, this was never the case back in the day, as NBA Hall-of-Famer Domonique Willkins reiterates.
Wilkins calls out Kevin Durant.
The latest superstar to ask out of their team despite being on a 4-year long-term contract is Kevin Durant. This offseason has been revolving around Durant's trade request, which was reported a few hours before the league's Free Agency period commenced. KD's trade request shocked the NBA, but it made sense given what he went through in Brooklyn for the past two years.
However, despite all the hardships and trials in Brooklyn that motivated Durant to request a trade, Wilkins believes this shouldn't be an excuse for him to run to another team. After all, according to Wilkins, Durant is being paid big money to handle all the hardships of leading a franchise.
"I'm cut from the old school cloth," Wilkins explained, as Wenzell Ortiz of Sideline Sources reported. "At some point, players are going to have to realize that no matter some of the trials and tribulations you go through, you got to hang in there and stick it out. We are paid to provide a service for our franchise and so I would like to see guys sticking and hanging with those franchises a little longer," Wilkins said.
Wilkins encourages Durant to stay in Brooklyn
After asking for a trade, Durant reportedly told Nets management that the Pheonix Suns and Miami Heat were his ideal destinations. While it makes sense that KD would like to go to a proven championship contender (whose All-Stars are vaccinated and eligible to play, ahem, Kyrie Irving, ahem), Wilkins thinks that this will only make Durant's situation worst.
According to Wilkins, not only will KD receive a lot of flack for jumping to another team, but he could also end up messing up the situation of the new team he goes to — similar to what KD's teammate, James Harden, did precisely with the Nets last year.
"Yeah, a lot went on in Brooklyn; a lot of moving parts that didn't quite click or come together. So I can understand [Kevin Durant's] frustration — believe me I can understand his frustration. But sometimes, you know, you don't want to leave one situation to go to a worse situation. That's the chance you take."
To follow up on Harden, the 10-time All-Star assumed he would form an unbeatable team alongside Durant and Irving, only for him to give up on them months after and jump to the Philadelphia 76ers. Wilkins fears that this could again happen to Durant (similar to his tenure in Golden State), which is why the Hall-of-Famer encourages KD to take the more challenging road and stick it out in Brooklyn instead.