Although Kevin Durant’s recent trade demand reports are rolling in that the Brooklyn Nets may not trade their star forward if they are unable to get the right trade package in return. It’s been said that the Nets are hoping to land the biggest trade package ever in return for Durant. Adrian Wojnarowski recently confirmed that Brooklyn might choose not to move their star.
“Absolutely, especially if this drags out and if there’s not a deal found here in the next month and it goes into August, and you get closer to training camp,” Wojnarowski said. “Brooklyn, they don’t have to take a deal that they don’t want to do. … But then, at the same time, Kevin Durant, as he looks at the situation, could he look at it differently over time? That’s certainly a possibility.”
Even if Durant returns to the Nets, the expectation is that Kyrie Irving has played his last game in Brooklyn. The All-Star point guard has remained linked to Los Angeles Lakers since first tossing around the idea that he would join the team for the $6 million mid-level extension. However, after opting into the final year of his contract with the Nets, Irving remains in rumors to reunite with LeBron James on the Lakers. A move that even James is said to welcome.
“James, I’m told, wants to see Irving in Lakerland more than anyone. What other team, furthermore, has a LeBron-sized personality with the experience to cope with all the chaos that comes with adding Kyrie? James, remember, has often thrived in chaos,” Marc Stein wrote.
Recent updates around the possibility of a Nets and Lakers trade involving Kyrie Irving and Russell Westbrook continue to swirl with the latest being a third team possibly joining the deal.
Third Team Entering Possible Irving Deal
With the ongoing talks with the Lakers sort of stalling out a July 7 report noted a third NBA team that be key in helping facilitate a deal.
Eric Pincus from Bleacher Report noted that the Nets and Lakers may soon get the help of a rebuilding San Antonio Spurs team to help a deal get done.
Last week it was reported that the Lakers and Nets deal was gaining momentum and that it hinges on the Lakers being willing to absorb the salary of Brooklyn sharpshooter Joe Harris. According to Chris B. Haynes, “There’s palpable optimism that an agreement can be struck between the two sides this offseason, but there remain a few hurdles, sources said.” One of the hurdles being absorbing Harris’ salary.
However, a contradicting report came out from Brian Lewis of The New York Post that Brooklyn plans on retaining Harris and does not want him included in any trades this offseason.
“I know the Nets absolutely do not want to trade Joe under any scenario,” a league source told Lewis. “But there are just thousands of different ways this can play out.”
Now a third team, the Spurs, can help the salary concerns and that for them could mean taking on the Russell Westbrook contract. The Spurs have some pieces that could be valuable trade assets as well. Pincus has the Spurs Doug McDermott and Josh Richardson possibly going to the Lakers, and Spurs center Jakob Poeltl being sent to the Nets.
With the Spurs being in a rebuild, they would likely buyout the final year of the Westbrook contract while getting younger players like Kendrick Nunn and Talen Horton Tucker in the deal. Of course draft picks will be included in the deals as well. For the full outlook including salary range read Pincus’ report.
The interesting nugget is that Brooklyn could potentially pull off a deal without taking on the large Westbrook contract. Or even be able to get him on the buy-out market if they want him. It will also free them of the drama and unpredictability of Irving.
Will a Deal Get Done?
Although, it hasn’t been long it feels like this possible trade between the Nets and Lakers has been discussed for months. Will it ever happen? Dave McMenamin commented on how Summer League may help a deal get done between both sides.
“Well, the Lakers are going to be bringing their summer-league contingency out to Las Vegas. That includes Rob Pelinka, and Rob Pelinka will be able to have a face-to-face conversation with Sean Marks of the Brooklyn Nets.
“And they can discuss things like, ‘Are we going to be able to put together a deal here, and are we actually getting your best offer yet? Is it just been positioning from both sides? Can we actually come down to brass tacks and figure out a deal here?
“If the Lakers can’t figure something out with Kyrie, if that’s not feasible, they’re going to have to move on, because their roster is incomplete,” McMenamin said on NBA Today.