After seven-time NBA All-Star Kevin Durant secured the 2014 MVP award with a dynamic stat line of 32.0 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 5.5 assists per game, the loyal supporters of the Washington Wizards began preparing for the summer of 2016, when the Washington, D.C. native would have the opportunity to return home.
When the Wizards earned a berth in the Eastern Conference semifinals in 2015 behind their scintillating guard tandem of John Wall and Bradley Beal, these fans salivated at the mere thought of Durant joining their arsenal. Despite a frustrating 2015-16 season for Washington in which they missed the playoffs while losing the fire that had propelled them to the upper echelon of the Eastern Conference the previous season, once former Oklahoma City Thunder head coach Scott Brooks was hired for the Wizards' vacancy, the hope for landing Durant was rejuvenated.
Durant unlikely to meet with Wizards
"Durant For 2016" t-shirts and stickers became a commodity across the DMV, and one Wizards fan even began a kickstarter campaign to fund KD's return to the nation's capital. However, all of this fanfare surrounding the five-time All-NBA First Team selection backfired.
Durant iterated that the "KD2DC" movement had reached a disrespectful fever pitch when the Wizards fans appeared to be more focused on professing their need for the superstar small forward than cheering on their hometown squad when the Thunder visited in November of 2015.
Now, Washington is unlikely to even receive the chance to meet with the 2016 All-NBA Second Teamer.
Reports surfaced on Saturday that the chances of Durant's brass bringing in Wizards representatives to Los Angeles for a meeting are extremely slim, ending the pipe dream of landing the career-27.4 points per game scorer that Washington fans had been clinging to for over two seasons.
Durant will not meet with Lakers
Furthermore, the Los Angeles Lakers are another team left out in the Durant sweepstakes, unlikely to land a meeting with him and his agent as well.
After selecting former Duke forward Brandon Ingram, whose potential has been likened to that of a young Durant, with the second overall pick in Thursday's NBA Draft, the Lakers are in the midst of building a talented starting lineup with the likes of point guard D'Angelo Russell running the show and power forward Julius Randle garnering double-doubles in the post.
However, Durant has his mind set on receiving the opportunity to capture his first championship ring immediately in whichever city he ends up in, ending the possibility of him signing on to lead an unseasoned Los Angeles roster.
Thus far, six franchises have been included on the list of teams expected to land an initial meeting with Durant. This includes representatives of the Thunder, Golden State Warriors, San Antonio Spurs, Los Angeles Clippers, Boston Celtics, and Miami Heat.