Adam Silver on Kevin Durant's trade request: 'This needs to be a two-way street'

The NBA commissioner spoke at the NBA2K23 Summer League in Las Vegas about the Brooklyn Nets superstar’s desire to be dealt and what it means for the rest of the league.

Video Transcript

ADAM SILVER: I don't know whether his-- whether he requested a trade or demanded one, frankly. But, look, this needs to be a two-way street. Teams provide enormous security and guarantees to players. And the expectation is, in return, that they'll meet their end of the bargain.

I'm realistic that there's always conversations that are going to go on behind closed doors between players and their representatives of the teams. But we don't like to see players requesting trades. And we don't like to see it playing out the way it is.

I mean, ideally, especially as I was just saying in the response to the last question, the basketball was fantastic this past season-- the playoffs, we had a wonderful Finals. And I don't want to be naive, but I would like-- I would love the focus to be on the play on the floor.

And as to what we can do about this issue, again, when a player has to be moved, it has a ripple effect on a lot of other players on that player's team and other teams. So it's not just potentially the league or the team governors who are impacted by that, but lots of other players as well.

So it's one of those issues that as we move into this collective bargaining cycle, which we're just beginning now, we intend to discuss with our Players Association and see if there are remedies for this that, again, as I said, it'll never be the case when players won't be unhappy in certain situations. But we don't want to see it playing out the way it is now.

And I think it is something where there's mutuality of interest between the players collectively and the league in having more stability. So that's something we'll be discussing with the union.