Sympathy has been notably absent in the Kevin Durant discourse that followed his trade request to leave the Brooklyn Nets. For all the reactions that came about following the breaking news, nobody felt bad for KD. From a logical perspective it's hard to really feel bad for any person whose annual salary nears $50 million but it is possible to feel some level of sympathy when a professional athlete gets screwed, i.e. the Isaiah Thomas situation with the Boston Celtics. But there isn't any of that when it comes to Durant's situation.
We know why that is: he chose this! He chose to join the Nets and team up with the notoriously unreliable Kyrie Irving. Irving proved once again just how unreliable he was when he chose to sit out most of last season due to the vaccine mandate, which led the Nets to balk on giving him a truckload of guaranteed money, which led to Irving trying to force his way out and failing, which led to Durant asking out. From A to B to C, everything that has happened so far is a direct result of Durant's initial decision to come to Brooklyn rather than the usual reasons a star player asks out, like incompetent management or many years of building frustration coming to a head.
All that is why it was surprising when Colin Cowherd decided to take the sympathy angle on The Herd today. The Fox Sports host said he roots for hard-working individuals to end up in situations that reward their hard work, so he feels bad that Durant's greatness is getting bogged down in Kyrie's weirdness and Ben Simmons' inadequacies.
It's a fairly convincing argument but for most people without skin in the game it's very much a "reap what you sow" situation. Durant is getting his. From a basketball perspective it definitely stinks watching a Hall of Famer get overshadowed by the BS going on around him. It is still not the same as Trevor Lawrence getting drafted by the Jaguars. Lawrence didn't have a choice in the matter. Durant had a choice, made it, decided he didn't like it, and has now put the onus on the Nets to fix everything one way or another.
Which is entirely Durant's right. He doesn't owe Brooklyn anything. But it's real hard to agree that he "deserves" better when the only person to blame for how he ended up here is the man himself.