For the first time this season, Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets can call themselves a winning basketball team.

Brooklyn clawed over .500 Wednesday with a 113-107 win over the Washington Wizards. The Nets have won six of their last eight since an embarrassing 153-121 loss to the Sacramento Kings on Nov. 15. And if you were looking for the one constant in Brooklyn’s recent success, look no further than Kevin Durant.

Durant scored 39 points on 13 of 20 shooting Wednesday to extend a historically efficient start to the year. This comes after the fourth-year Net dropped a season-high 45 points on 19 of 24 shooting Monday against Orlando.

Over his last four games, Durant is averaging 37.8 points, 6.5 rebounds and 5.8 assists on 59 of 95 (62.1 percent) shooting.

“Just playing care-free basketball, that’s the best way to play,” Kevin Durant said of his hot stretch. “Sometimes when you want to win too much, you get in your own way, you distract yourself a bit, and you’re worried about the results too much. So I just try to focus on the process of each possession.”

“I’m trying to stay mentally above everything and just keep grinding out every single possession. Every rep means something to me.”

Nets head coach Jacque Vaughn was asked what sticks out most about coaching Durant during the recent stretch:

“Sometimes I have to make sure that I don’t take him for granted,” Vaughn said of his star player.

For a franchise that has not seen a player of Durant’s caliber since they sold Dr. J to the 76ers in 1976, the Nets fanbase has frequently shared Vaughn’s sentiment over the last three seasons. Despite just 128 games in a Brooklyn uniform, Durant has already etched his name across the Nets record books.

The former MVP has posted 30-plus points, 5-plus rebounds and 5-plus assists in his last four games, tying his own streak from last season for the longest in Nets history. Durant’s eight 40-point games rank third all-time for the franchise. His 48 points in Brooklyn’s heartbreaking Game 7 loss to Milwaukee in the 2021 playoffs were the most scored in an elimination game in NBA history.

Durant’s open to this season is among the best in his career. The 34-year-old has scored 25-plus points in 21 of 23 games. He leads the NBA in field goal percentage (55.3) among players attempting 18 or more shots per game. And he ranks second in true shooting percentage (65.9) among 57 players averaging 14 or more shots, trailing only Steph Curry (68.8).

“There’s nothing normal about what he does out there on the floor,” Kyrie Irving said of Durant’s offensive efficiency. “That’s God-given talent. But when we see it displayed so effortlessly, so efficiently, we definitely have to celebrate that.”

Durant spoke about playing within the flow of Brooklyn’s offense despite his unconscious shooting after his 45-point performance Monday.

“I just keep playing within the flow because, respectfully, I feel like I’m always on,” he said. “Even if I’m not making shots that night, I feel like my jump shot is always sharp. So I don’t want to get in the way of the game too much by putting my head down and scoring because the team’s gonna make adjustments.”

Irving’s words following another Durant scoring outburst Wednesday were consistent with the mentality his teammate described.

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“When top talents in our world are in a rhythm like that you just want to keep feeding him,” Irving said of Durant. “But KD on the opposite end is like, ‘Just play free, you guys don’t need to force the ball to me, I’m going to get my shots.'”

“But hopefully he keeps it up, I want him to average 40,” Irving continued.

Irving paced Durant Wednesday with 27 points on 9 of 21 shooting. Joe Harris broke out of his three-point slump with 14 points on 4 of 6 shooting from deep.

Brooklyn won’t have much room for Durant to let up on his historically-efficient shooting with Ben Simmons out for a minimum of three games. Yuta Watanabe, who is leading the league in 3-point shooting this season, will also remain sidelined for at least the next week.

Wednesday’s win marks Brooklyn’s third straight to open a seven-game homestand. Despite a 1-5 start, the Nets sit just 2.5 games back of third place in the Eastern Conference. Kevin Durant and Co. will look to climb the standings as they close the homestand with matchups with Toronto, Boston, Charlotte and Atlanta.