The Brooklyn Nets' upcoming contract for free agent forward Kevin Durant will be a four-year deal worth $164 million, with a player option in the final year of the agreement, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports.
Architected much just LeBron James' four-year deal with the Los Angeles Lakers, Durant will have the chance to hit free agency in 2022 at age 33, likely setting himself up for one final max-level deal before he's forced to navigate the end of his career.
This only follows a trend which James started upon returning to Cleveland in 2014, signing a series of one-and-one deals until he eventually departed in 2018 to make his move to the Lakers.
Much in the same way Durant signed three one-and-one deals with the Golden State Warriors from 2016-18 and chose to take his talents east-bound to the Nets, giving them virtually a two-year commitment, considering he's bound to sit out the majority or all of the 2019-20 season with an Achilles injury.
Durant could play the 2020-21 and the 2021-22 season before deciding if Brooklyn is indeed the place where he will look to finish his career.
Most recently, Kawhi Leonard inked a three-year, $103 million deal with the L.A. Clippers with a player option for the third year, more than halving what his earnings could have been, had he signed a supermax deal with the San Antonio Spurs by this point.
NBA players are clearly valuing flexibility and free will over money at this stage of the game, as they're bound to fill their pockets one way or another with the boundless marketing opportunities in these big market cities.