If the Brooklyn Nets don’t end up with their ideal pairing of Kevin Durant to go with Kyrie Irving, Tobias Harris is reportedly the team’s backup plan.
Ian Begley of SNY confirmed the team’s interest in Harris if Durant falls through. Harris is expected to have several suitors, including his previous team the Philadelphia 76ers and the Dallas Mavericks. However, both of those teams will reportedly offer Harris less than max money to Harris.
Earlier in the day, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Irving was set to meet with the Nets on Sunday and that “both sides are motivated to move quickly” toward reaching a four-year, $141 million max deal.
Irving averaged 23.8 points, 6.9 assists and seven rebounds last season with the Celtics.
ESPN also reported that with the Irving signing, the team has “no intention” of keeping All-Star guard D’Angelo Russell on the roster. The team can either renounce Russell or work to find a sign-and-trade scenario. The Lakers are reportedly among the teams that have shown interest in bringing Russell aboard.
Tobias Harris Looking for Max Money After Career Season
Harris is one of the more interesting prospects on the market, riding the fine line between a good and max-level player. However, as one of the teams with the most cap room in the league, Brooklyn would have no problem giving Harris the max he’s searching for.
Last season between his stops with the Clippers and 76ers, Harris averaged a career-high 20 points, while grabbing 7.9 rebounds per game and shooting 48.7% from the field.
He’s most recently played for the 76ers but is well-travelled, having played for five different franchises (Detroit, Milwaukee, L.A. Clippers, Philadelphia and Orlando) in eight seasons.
NBA writer, Steve Kyler said on the Scoop B Radio Podcast. that he expected Harris to go back to the 76ers.
“If the 76ers come correct with the money, I think he’ll be back there. If they don’t I think Tobias is going shopping. Think about all of the places that dude has has already been traded from. He got traded from Milwaukee to Orlando, from Orlando to Detroit, from Detroit to the Clippers and the Clippers to Philly and he’s not 28 yet.”
As for the upside, Harris has proven not to be a difficult personality to work with in the locker room and doesn’t demand a high usage rate to have an impact on the game.
NBA free agents can officially begin negotiating agreements with teams at 6 p.m. ET Sunday, but can’t sign the deals until July 6.