Brooklyn Nets owner Joe Tsai finds himself in one of the NBA's biggest storylines, as the drama surrounding Kevin Durant's trade request continues. But on "First Take," Stephen A. Smith defended the Nets owner.
Smith feels that Tsai has every reason to be frustrated with Durant after all the freedom he's given him.
"I got Kyrie here because of you, James Harden because of you," Smith said. "Steve Nash? No experience. Never even coached high school. Didn't coach high school. Didn't coach college. Didn't coach pros. But you wanted him as your head coach."
"I'm Joe Tsai? I've given you every damn thing you wanted. You can give me a championship run with all of y'all on the court together."
On top of the request for a change of scenery, Durant gave Tsai an ultimatum in a recent meeting. The former MVP said he would return to Brooklyn, but only if Tsai fires coach Steve Nash and general manager Sean Marks.
Tsai quickly took to Twitter to show his support for the front office and coaching staff.
Does Kevin Durant owe Joe Tsai one legitimate run with the Brooklyn Nets?
A case can be made that Kevin Durant owes Joe Tsai one more go before ending his time in Brooklyn.
The Durant-Kyrie Irving era of the Nets has fallen short of expectations. They haven't made it past the second round of the playoffs, and are fresh off a first-round sweep by the Boston Celtics. This season could be a chance for them to change the narrative.
The Nets could make a run at the title if Durant returns for one more season. Marks has built a legitimate contender in Brooklyn. If all of the players return healthy, the Nets would have one of the best teams in the NBA.