Durant Scores 33 To Lead Suns’ 136-120 Win Over Nets

Kevin Durant, Phoenix Suns, NBA News, Brooklyn Nets
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant scored 33 points and contributed eight assists in his first game back in Brooklyn since his trade to Phoenix, leading the Suns to a 136-120 win during Wednesday’s NBA action.

Durant’s return to Brooklyn was met with a mix of cheers and boos, but his performance with the Phoenix Suns quickly silenced the crowd. He expressed satisfaction in quieting the crowd, especially after receiving a mixed reception.

“I love to shut the crowd up. Even though I love these people here, I love to shut them up,” Durant said.

The game, broadcast nationally, saw the Suns pull away in the second half, largely thanks to Durant’s 11-point spree in the third quarter.

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Kevin Durant, Phoenix Suns, Mikal Bridges, Brooklyn Nets Updates

Suns coach Frank Vogel praised Durant for his selfless play and highlighted his role in facilitating team success. The Suns, featuring a solid lineup with Devin Booker and Bradley Beal, aimed to cement themselves as championship contenders.

“He put the team first, went out and competed, played team-first basketball, had eight assists and several other plays where made the extra pass and allowed his teammates to play through his double-teams and played a team-first type of game and ended up with 33 and eight,” Vogel said. “Hell of a performance.”

Meanwhile, without their former star trio of Durant, Kyrie Irving, and James Harden, the Nets are struggling to secure a playoff spot with a 19-28 record.

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Kevin Durant, Phoenix Suns, Mikal Bridges, Brooklyn Nets Updates

Jusuf Nurkic also shone for the Suns, adding 28 points and 11 rebounds, overpowering the Nets’ smaller lineup. The Suns have been successful in recent games, with this win marking their ninth in eleven matches. They continue their road trip with games against Atlanta and Washington.

Nets coach Jacque Vaughn acknowledged the challenge of facing the Suns’ top players, emphasizing the difficulty in containing their offense. The Suns excelled in shooting, hitting 62% from the field and 50% from three-point range.

“It’s tough. With a team like that, you know they’re going to shoot well, just those three guys at a high level, so we had to pick our battles tonight,” Vaughn said.

For the Nets, Cam Thomas led with 25 points, followed by Mikal Bridges and Lonnie Walker IV, who added 21 and 19 points, respectively. Despite a pre-game tribute video for Durant, which he had previously stated he did not want, the crowd’s initial cheers turned to boos once the game began, which Durant brushed off, focusing on his performance.

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Kevin Durant, Phoenix Suns, Mikal Bridges, Brooklyn Nets Updates

Durant reflected on his time with the Nets, acknowledging the mixed feelings fans may have towards him. Despite the high hopes upon his arrival in 2019, Durant’s tenure with the Nets did not result in significant playoff success, leading to his request to be traded.

“That wasn’t going to stop me from just doing my job, regardless of how I was honored,” Durant said

The game also highlighted the Nets’ roster challenges, including the absence of Ben Simmons due to injury. The Suns capitalized on this, especially in the third quarter, significantly extending their lead. Phoenix’s dominance inside was evident as they outrebounded Brooklyn 42-27 despite missing forward Grayson Allen due to injury.

The Suns look forward to their next game against the Atlanta Hawks, while the Nets aim to bounce back against the Philadelphia 76ers.

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