Nets Could Land 7x All-Star Forward in ‘Obvious’ Durant Swap

Paul George

Getty Kawhi Leonard #2 and Paul George #13 of the LA Clippers laugh during a preseason game

First, it was the Kyrie Irving contract negotiation news taking the NBA by storm during the NBA Draft. Then, just before the NBA free agency window opened Kevin Durant told the Brooklyn Nets that he would like to be traded. Now both are likely to leave the Nets before the start of the season. Durant has listed the Miami Heat and Phoenix Suns as the teams he would most like to be traded to following his demands. However, both of those deals now feel unlikely unless the Suns are willing to part with Devin Booker. 

Brooklyn has been discussed in trade packages that include the Suns, but have reportedly turned down over four offers from them. The Toronto Raptors remain a strong possibility in a deal involving their rookie of the year and more. Even rumors involving the former number one overall pick from the New Orleans Pelicans, Zion Williamson has been mentioned

There still seems to be no real traction as of right now for Durant, but there are plenty of rumors out there one interesting possibility in The Athletic’s John Hollinger’s recent column was a deal that included Paul George. 


Durant to the Clippers in Trade Involving Paul George

“Let us recall that on Kawhi Leonard’s free-agent tour in 2019, his first call to team up with a wingman wasn’t to Paul George … it was to Kevin Durant,” Hollinger writes. 

Hollinger did note that Durant would have to be able to stomach joining “Kawhi’s team,” but he doesn’t really have a say in where the Nets trade him after his demand. The Clippers if they were to part with George, would be able to put together a decent trade package. 

“Paul George goes back to the Nets, allowing them to live another day. Like Davis above, he has two years left on his deal. Brooklyn could likely get a few more considerations from the Clippers, adding Terance Mann, Brandon Boston, a 2028 unprotected first, and swaps in 2027 and 2029. Maybe they could stuff a Norm Powell-for-Joe Harris swap into the deal as well,” Hollinger continued

George and Ben Simmons could still field a pretty competitive team, and you factor that into the picks they receive. It could be the first step in building from the failed experiment that was Durant and Irving in Brooklyn. George played well for the Clippers last season, averaging 24.3 points, 6.9 rebounds, and 5.9 assists in the games that he did play. However, he only appeared in 31 games but should be ready for next season. If it’s in a Nets uniform is yet to be seen. 


Other Possible Durant Deals

Hollinger listed five possible landing spots for Durant in his column. Among the possible teams, there weren’t any surprises. The Phoenix Suns, Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, and Toronto Raptors are all part of Hollinger’s discussions. 

It’s hard to say that any of the deals are getting close for Brooklyn, but the rest of free agency seems to be waiting for that chip to fall. It still remains possible that no deal is made, and Durant returns to the Nets. 

 

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