The Brooklyn Nets are still unsure about what their roster will look like once they enter training camp. Kevin Durant officially requested a trade from the franchise at the opening of free agency and the relationship between Kyrie Irving and the franchise appears to be frayed as well. After just three seasons and no appearances in the Eastern Conference Finals, the Durant and Kyrie era in Brooklyn could be over before it even had a chance to take off.
As one of the most prolific players in the NBA, the Nets would rather keep Durant than trade him. But in Kyrie’s case, the Nets seem to be ready to move on from the All-Star guard. After playing just 29 games last season because he refused to get the COVID-19 vaccination, the Nets had preliminary discussions on a trade that would send Irving to the Lakers and Russell Westbrook to the Nets per “Yahoo Sports”.
During a Spotify Live session on July 19, NBA insider Brandon “Scoop B” Robinson of Bally Sports said that Westbrook was imploring his now former agent Thad Foucher to get him to the Nets.
“Russell Westbrook had his former agent Thad Foucher begging Sean Marks directly every day to come to Brooklyn,” Robinson said (H/T @playboileb on Twitter).
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Lakers Stars Held Private Meeting During Summer League
Much like the Nets, the Los Angeles Lakers had a disappointing season in 2022. After coming in as the favorites to win the Western Conference with Westbrook, Anthony Davis, and LeBron James at the helm, the Lakers didn’t even qualify for the play-in tournament.
However, Despite a failed season and Westbrook’s apparent disgruntlement with the franchise, Chris B. Haynes of Yahoo Sports says the three stars had a private meeting in Las Vegas during the NBA Summer League to get back on the right page.
“The Los Angeles Lakers’ Big 3 of LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Russell Westbrook huddled up on a phone conversation the first weekend of NBA Summer League in Las Vegas with each expressing their commitment to one another and vowing to make it work, league sources told Yahoo Sports,” Haynes writes.
“While the uncertainty of Westbrook’s future with the Lakers remains, the conversation was organized to make sure all three were on the same page as long as they’re joined together in their pursuit of a championship, sources said”
Westbrook, KD Reunion Won’t Guarantee the Same Success
Westbrook coming to Brooklyn would of course reunite him and his former Oklahoma City Thunder teammate Kevin Durant. Durant and Westbrook had a bitter break-up in 2016. After blowing a 3-1 lead to the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference Finals, Durant left behind his co-star to join the same team that had eliminated them in the playoffs just weeks prior.
Six years have passed since Durant’s departure and the two All-Stars seem to have mended fences since then. But a lot has changed since they were the young, explosive tandem that made the Thunder a top team in the Western Conference. And the blunt reality is that a reunion in Brooklyn doesn’t necessarily equate to them duplicating the success they enjoyed earlier in their careers.