The NBA news of the day certainly caught the eye of NY sportsbooks.
The never-ending Brooklyn Nets’ drama is back to its start as superstar forward Kevin Durant said he will return to play for the team for the 2022-23 season, which makes the team title contenders again in the opinion of oddsmakers.
On Tuesday, the Nets announced, via Twitter, that Durant will remain with the team. This follows the 6-10 all-NBA sharpshoooter requesting a trade back on June 30 (right before the start of the league’s free agency period):
In the tweet, Nets general manager Sean Marks said: “Steve Nash and I, together with (owners) Joe Tsai and Clara Wu Tsai, met with Kevin Durant and Rich Kleiman in Los Angeles yesterday. We have agreed to move forward with our partnership. We are focusing on basketball, with one collective goal in mind: build a lasting franchise to bring a championship to Brooklyn.”
Betting Reaction Is Immediate
New York oddsmakers reacted to the latest twist with Durant swiftly.
In fact, John Ewing, a data analyst at BetMGM New York, tweeted out some eye-opening numbers from his company on the Nets' odds to win the NBA Finals.
- +700: Open
- +850: Before KD trade request
- +2500: After KD trade request
- +4000: Longest odds in July
- +1600: Yesterday
- +700: Today.
That’s full circle, for sure.
BetMGM had 4.6% of the tickets and 5.3% of the handle.
As the Nets Turn
So, after close to two months since his trade demand and no deal established, Durant seems to have had a change of heart and will remain.
Durant, who turns 34 on Sept. 29, signed a $198 million, four-year contract extension last season with the Nets. In 55 games last year, Durant averaged 29.9 points, 7.4 rebounds and 6.4 assists per game.
The change in thinking comes only two weeks after The Athletic reported that Durant had told Nets ownership he would not play for them if Marks and Nash remained. Nash, remember, was pretty much Durant’s hand-picked coach at the time.
And that had the predictable reaction in New York NBA betting of pretty much forgetting about the Nets this season.
Fans had kind of expected the Nets to disappoint.
After being a preseason betting favorite, the Nets finished 44-38 to finish in seventh place in the Eastern Conference, nine games back of the first-place Miami Heat.
Even then, many expected them to make noise in the playoffs, particularly with Kyrie Irving playing full-time.
But the silence was deafening and jaws dropped watching Brooklyn get swept in four games in the first round to the Boston Celtics.
Taking a Look Ahead
Brooklyn opens up its regular season Oct. 19 by hosting the New Orleans Pelicans.
The Nets will be featured on national TV 23 times and will have the “Big 3” in full health with point guard Irving back in the mix and former Philadelphia 76ers’ problem child Ben Simmons in the fold, after last year’s trade for James Harden.
Questions do remain and it seems like these could be ongoing themes:
How will the Durant, Irving and Simmons co-exist?
How will Durant get along with Nash and Marks after his remarks?
Will Simmons actually play and, if so, when?
Will the Nets “Trust the Process” and finally capture an NBA title?
Count on NewYorkBets.com to be monitoring the ups and downs of the Nets’ season and for the top New York sports betting promo codes.