Tim MacMahon: Suns should call Thunder about a possible Kevin Durant reunion

After being swept in the first round, the future looks bleak for the old and expensive Phoenix Suns. This could mean drastic offseason changes, such as Kevin Durant’s departure.

The 35-year-old is in the twilight stage of his career. This means he only has limited shots left to win another championship. Being swept in Round 1 despite averaging 26.8 points on 55% shooting will surely not sit well with the future Hall-of-Famer.

This could cause Durant to force the Suns’ hand and trade him away after two failed postseason runs with them. Despite his age, the 14-time All-Star is still one of the best players in the league.

After two years, it looks like a championship won’t happen in Phoenix. Durant’s addition to any squad would upgrade them as title contenders. He’d have several suitors attracted to his services.

According to ESPN’s Tim McMahon, a reunion with the Thunder should be on the cards for Durant. The young squad finished with the first seed and has the best young nucleus. A duo of himself and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander would arguably be the best in the league.

“I think the best way out for the Suns is certainly not what Mat Ishbia wants to hear and that would be to trade Kevin Durant,” MacMahon said to AZ Central. “There would still be plenty of interest in Kevin Durant. My first phone call probably would be to his original home.

“I don’t know what Oklahoma City’s interest would be, but I could convince myself he would be one hell of a fit there and it wouldn’t be about the players you’re getting back, but obviously the picks in that case.”

On paper, Durant is a seamless fit with the Thunder. He’s one of the best scorers in the league and his elite efficiency means he won’t need to eat up too many possessions from others on the roster.

The tricky part involves off-court factors. Durant’s relationship with the Thunder fanbase is pretty complex. When he’s in town, he still gets rained down with boos eight years after he left the Thunder for the Golden State Warriors.

It might be a hard pitch to sell for a significant portion of the fanbase. Feelings are still raw for some groups as they’d rather not let the former MVP enjoy the fruits of OKC’s labor.

The other variable that might make this impossible to materialize is what the Suns would ask in return. They will almost certainly ask for at least one of Jalen Williams or Chet Holmgren plus a treasure trove of draft picks.

At that point, serious reflection will be required from the Thunder — should it shorten its title window in length to boost its odds in the immediate future? Durant is only under contract for two years at $105.9 million. This puts OKC at risk of a bleak future if he either leaves again or declines.

A Durant trade to the Thunder sounds attractive in a vacuum, but the trade pieces needed, the optics of welcoming him back after his ugly divorce from OKC and the risk of ruining a title window makes it a much more complex situation.

Story originally appeared on Thunder Wire