In the eyes of many, the Brooklyn Nets entered the 2021-22 NBA season as the clear favorites in the Eastern Conference to advance to the NBA Finals.
That was, of course, due to their superstar trio of Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving.
As the season progressed, however, it became abundantly clear that all was not right in Brooklyn.
According to one report, players on the Nets eventually began to feel as though Harden had quit on the team. He was later traded.
The report came from Shams Charania, who added that he believes that Harden would not have been traded to the Philadelphia 76ers if Durant had remained healthy and the Nets had continued to win.
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“When you’re dealing with a guy that you feel quit on you, and then he misses two more games, the writing was on the wall,” Charania said. “He was out of there.”
Now, the Nets will prepare to battle in the play-in tournament. On Tuesday, they’ll take on the pesky Cleveland Cavaliers, who would love to advance to the playoffs with a big win over the Nets.
It is certainly interesting how a handful of rumors about Brooklyn have come out just hours before the Nets are set to begin their postseason journey. However, perhaps a season full of frustration and distractions has prepared Nets players to ignore all the chatter going on around them.
The Nets wrapped up the regular season by winning five of their last seven games. They’ll look to continue that trend of success in the play-in tournament.