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Nets’ Kevin Durant may play some small-ball center next season


The Brooklyn Nets may also embrace the idea of playing “small ball” next season once superstar Kevin Durant gets cleared to return to the hardwood.

The one-time league MVP, who usually plays both forward positions, will likely spend some time at center upon his return, per Brian Lewis of the New York Post.

Prior to his dismissal as Nets head coach, Kenny Atkinson opened up about the idea of fielding a smaller unit with Durant anchoring the middle.

“No problem. If he’s going against a big strong guy, [maybe not]; but then you have to come out and guard him,” Atkinson told The Post in his final game at the helm in Brooklyn. “Teams are realizing. You just have to understand that advantage.”

Houston Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni, meanwhile, has somehow found success with small ball over there in Texas, making do with PJ Tucker and Robert Covington manning the paint.

KD, of course, is much taller than the two and actually has the height to play center.

Eagle-eyed NBA fans have long speculated that Durant is well above his initial listed height of 6-foot-9 and is actually close to seven-feet. He was officially listed at 6-foot-10 this year.

Known best as a scorer who can light up defenses from almost anywhere on the floor, Durant is also an underrated defender who maximizes his ridiculous wingspan by altering shots and denying passing lanes.

Incumbent Nets head coach Jacque Vaughn, meanwhile, will indeed have a dilemma on his hands next year in terms of his center situation. Brooklyn has struggled with the pairing of their traditional slotmen Jarett Allen and DeAndre Jordan.

Having Durant play center will indeed open a lot of intriguing opportunities for the team. It is also worth noting that Durant will be coming off a long layoff from an Achilles injury, and it may not be wise for him to be constantly banging bodies with the league’s best bigmen.