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Stephen A Smith Calls Kevin Durant Joining The Nets ‘The Wrong Decision’ In Part Because ‘Kyrie Irving Betrayed You’

The Brooklyn Nets were throttled at home by the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night thanks to a monster performance by Steph Curry, who played so well that the crowd at Barclays Center showered him with MVP chants. While the loss knocked the Nets to 10-5 on the season, the team is still in third place in the Eastern Conference and one game out of first place.

Despite this, Stephen A. Smith thinks the loss is a sign of a much bigger issue in Brooklyn, and on Wednesday’s edition of First Take, he expressed his belief that Kevin Durant should have never joined the franchise in the first place.

Much of Smith’s argument revolves around Durant having “no help” despite his two superstar teammates — James Harden, he claims, “ain’t James Harden right now, averaging 19 points a game. You sittin’ there, struggling from the field, you had 24 points last night, it’s the most meaningless 24 points that I’ve ever seen from the career of James Harden.” He then turned his ire to Kyrie Irving, who has yet to play in a game this season due to his decision to not get vaccinated against COVID-19.

“KD, you made the wrong decision, bro, and here’s why: Because you trusted Kyrie,” Smith said. “Kyrie Irving betrayed you, flat out betrayed you, left you hanging. And why you’re sittin’ up there, gettin’ your ass kicked last night — Steph Curry’s sittin’ there, shimmyin’ and jokin’ around, they were cheering for Steph Curry in Brooklyn from opening tap. They were chanting ‘MVP’ in the Barclays Center, and it wasn’t for the dude averaging 28.9 points per game for the Brooklyn Nets. It was for Steph Curry.

“And then you juxtapose Steph Curry, compared to Kyrie Irving, and what do you have?” Smith continued. “You got Kyrie Irving, who is a showstopper, Kyrie Irving, who is a superstar talent, he is box office, and can’t be trusted. I actually hope Kyrie Irving gets cut, I mean, this is a disgrace. To sit up there and watch this team last night look like straight garbage, and every respectable team that you go against — you lost to Chicago by double-digits, you got spanked last night by Golden State by double-digits, you lost to the Charlotte Hornets by double-digits, you got spanked on opening night by double-digits against Milwaukee — every respectable team you go up against, waxes y’all behind. And why? Because KD don’t have not help. You’re left there all alone, you ain’t got a culture, you don’t even got a damn fanbase.”

Smith went on to say that he was showing more passion by being disappointed than anyone who attends a game at Barclays Center has for the Nets before turning his attention back to Irving, claiming that while it can be denied by anyone, he knows what sequence of events led to Durant ending up in Brooklyn.

“KD and Kyrie were going to the Knicks, they were going to the Garden,” Smith said. “Kyrie steps in and Kyrie said, ‘To hell with all of that, let’s establish our own culture, let’s go to Brooklyn, don’t feed off of their brand, their culture, let’s build our own culture.’ KD said, ‘Yo, I wanna go with Kyrie.’ But even in the wee hours, Kyrie and KD wasn’t talking, because Kyrie was all over the place. And DeAndre Jordan had to get on a phone call, five in the morning, to get them brothers together, so you could do this and come to Brooklyn. That is why KD is in Brooklyn. Only to be here and watch this dude, this sad excuse for a professional — I ain’t sayin’ he ain’t a superstar, I didn’t say he’s not box office. As a talent, I think Kyrie Irving deserves $50 million a year. I don’t think that man should ever get another long-term contract in his career, cause he can’t be trusted.”

Smith closed by saying the fans in Brooklyn do not appreciate and value Durant nearly enough, that he thinks Steve Nash is not quite up for being the coach of a team right now, and that he has no plans of returning to Barclays Center unless ESPN makes him. It is worth mentioning that Smith and Durant have butted heads a number of times in the past, and that he does not seem to think that Durant just likes being in Brooklyn regardless of what’s going on with Irving. The Nets will get the chance to bounce back on Wednesday night during a home tilt against the Cleveland Cavaliers.