New York Knicks Show Kevin Durant in 2019 Season-Ticket Ad

Photo credit USA Today Sports

NEW YORK ( -- The New York Knicks insist it was only a coincidence that advertising for season-ticket renewals included a photo of Kevin Durant.

The team removed the picture over concerns of the perception it was creating. After trading Kristaps Porzingis to the Dallas Mavericks last month, the Knicks will have enough salary cap space this summer to sign two max-level free agents. Durant, the superstar Golden State Warriors forward, is expected to be the top player available.

The photo, which appeared on the Knicks' website, shows rookie center Mitchell Robinson matched up against Durant.

"Game action photos are used all the time for marketing purposes, but given everything going on, we took the precaution of taking the photo down," the Knicks said in a statement Sunday night. "To be clear, it was one of several rotating photos on the website."

Last week, Durant made it clear he's not interested in discussing his impending free agency.

"I have nothing to do with the Knicks," the 10-time All-Star told reporters. "I don't know who traded (Kristaps) Porzingis. They got nothing to do with me. I'm trying to play basketball. Y'all come in here every day, ask me about free agency, ask my teammates, my coaches. You rile up the fans about it. Let us play basketball. That's all I'm saying. And now when I don't want to talk to y'all. It's a problem with me."