Rose contends that Durant, who becomes a free agent in 2016, will jump ship and sign with Houston to play with buddy, and former teammate, James Harden along with athletic big man Dwight Howard (watch below).
Durant took some time away from training camp to address Rose’s “tantalizing” prediction.
Q: Did you hear what Jalen Rose said about the Houston thing?
Do you have any thoughts on that?
Nah, I’m here for the Thunder (laughs). I mean, that’s all I can say. I’m not thinking far down the line at all. It’s about today. Today we got better against the Chicago Bulls. I can’t tell the future. I can’t speak on that. That’s his opinion. I’m just going to keep playing for the Thunder. I love playing here.
Rose made the comments in an NBA preview discussion with Bill Simmons for Grantland. Durant, who famously announced a five-year maximum extension with the Thunder via Twitter in July of 2010, is signed through the end of the 2015-16 season. Recent history tells us there’s little Durant, or any superstar approaching free agency, can do to quell the speculation aside from emphasizing that he’s focused on battling for a championship in Oklahoma City.
Until Durant puts ink on a new contract with the Thunder, rumblings of what’s to come will persist as it did with Dwight Howard in 2012 and LeBron James in 2010.
#35 would clearly prefer not to be a part of that conversation. Can’t blame him.