Kevin Durant plans to sign a four-year, $198 million maximum contract extension with the Brooklyn Nets sometime after he becomes eligible Saturday, his longtime business manager and co-founder of Thirty Five Ventures and Boardroom, Rich Kleiman, told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Durant is expected to decline his 2022-23 player option and extend off of his $42 million salary for the 2021-22 season.
Durant, who is set to play for a third gold medal with Team USA in Tokyo against France on Friday night, was spectacular in his return to the court this season. He missed his first season in Brooklyn while recovering from a torn Achilles tendon suffered in Game 5 of the 2019 NBA Finals in Toronto while still playing for the Golden State Warriors.
He wound up playing only 35 regular-season games for Brooklyn last season due to a combination of COVID-19 absences and a hamstring injury, but Durant averaged 26.9 points, 7.1 rebounds and 5.6 assists and made his 11th All-Star appearance.
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Durant then averaged 34.3 points, 9.3 rebounds and 4.4 assists in 12 playoff games for the Nets, including arguably the greatest performance of his legendary career — a 49-point, 17-rebound, 10-assist triple-double while playing all 48 minutes of a 114-108 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals. He then played all 53 minutes of Brooklyn’s overtime loss in Game 7, scoring another 48 points — including hitting a game-tying shot in the final second of regulation to force the extra session.
The Nets are currently projected to spend $296 million next season in payroll and luxury taxes, per ESPN’s Bobby Marks. That is the second-biggest number in NBA history, trailing only next season’s Warriors, as they try to win the franchise’s first NBA championship around Durant, Kyrie Irving and James Harden. Irving joined Durant in Brooklyn as free agents two years ago, and the Nets executed a blockbuster trade with the Houston Rockets to land Harden in January.
Both Irving and Harden will also be eligible to sign contract extensions with Brooklyn this offseason.
Durant made the official announcement on Boardroom.