The Brooklyn Nets are still in limbo on if they will offer their All-Star guard Kyrie Irving a long-term deal when he becomes extension eligible on July 1. Irving only played 29 games for the Nets during the 2022 season because the team sidelined him for not getting the COVID vaccination. Doing so made him ineligible to play home games at Barclays Center for most of the year. The New Jersey native did not make his season debut until January. Irving’s lack of dependability as it pertains to his availability has become a concern as it pertains to his new deal being long-term.
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Proposed Trade Sends Kyrie Irving to Bucks for All-Star
If the two sides are unable to come to a new agreement this summer, Kyrie will become a free agent next summer and can sign with any team of his choosing. Ben Stinar of “Sports Illustrated” suggests a trade proposal where the Nets move their star point guard to the Milwaukee Bucks for either All-NBA defender Jrue Holiday or three-point sniper Khris Middleton.
“The Bucks should trade *either* Khris Middleton or Jrue Holiday to the Brooklyn Nets for Kyrie Irving,” Stinar said per his Twitter account on May 15. “Middleton for Irving salaries work. Holiday for Irving salaries work. Who says no?”
Celtics Could Steal Bruce Brown From Nets
The Nets currently have seven players scheduled to hit the free-agent market. Outside of their big man Nicolas Claxton, perhaps the most important free agent is their forward Bruce Brown. After the Nets traded James Harden to the Philadelphia 76ers on February 10, Brown’s level of play elevated significantly. Per Stat Muse, Brown averaged 13.9 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 3.5 assists in 27 games for the Nets during that span. That level of play elevated even more in the first round of the playoffs against the Boston Celtics as he averaged 14.0 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 2.8 assists in those four games.
According to one NBA executive, the team that eliminated Brown in the playoffs this year could be among the favorites to land him in free agency.
“They will have limited resources,” one NBA executive said to Heavy’s own Sean Deveney.“ But they are going to look at guys who can defend. I would not be surprised if they make a pitch for Bruce Brown. He might be out of their price range in the end, and maybe he goes back to Brooklyn, but Ime (Udoka) was an assistant there, and we’ve seen that carries some weight with who they bring in. He was good in that Celtics series. If he can’t get a big offer, they could sneak in with him on a one-and-one (one year, with a player option) deal and put him to good use.”
The Nets seemed to have the next great dynasty on their hands with the trio of Kyrie, Kevin Durant, and James Harden. But as quickly as the Nets dynasty came to fruition, is just as quickly as it has fallen for the franchise. With a bevy of their roster set to hit the free agency market in July, their team could have a brand new identity next season.