Before NBA free agency even got underway on Thursday the first big piece of news emerged as it was reported that Kevin Durant had requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets. The news comes after the Nets were swept in the first round of the playoffs by the Boston Celtics.
Kyrie Irving picked up his $36.9 million option to stay with the Nets next season but it’s unclear if he’ll be back with the team next season. Durant still has four years left on the four-year $198 million deal he signed last season.
Bulls in the Mix?
It’s no surprise that most of the NBA will call the Nets and see what it would take to land Kevin Durant. Chicago Bulls fans were quick to point to a photo of Kevin Durant practicing in a Bulls jersey and start dreaming of him in Chicago.
POINTSBET has already released their odds for Kevin Durant’s next team and the Bulls are tied for the fourth-best odds at +400 with the New Orleans Pelicans. The Phoenix Suns currently have the best odds at -110, followed by the Miami Heat at +125.
It’s no surprise that the Suns and Heat are at the top of the list after Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Thursday that the two teams are at the top of Durant’s wish list. Nothing has been reported about the Bulls’ possibility of landing Durant at this time but it’s fun to think about the possibility.
Trade for Durant
Any team that does decide to trade for Kevin Durant is going to have to pay a hefty price. So if the Bulls were to put together a package to try and acquire Durant what would it look like?
On ESPN’s NBA trade machine a trade of Nikola Vucevic, Patrick Williams, and Alex Caruso in exchange for Durant works but it would probably take more for the deal to get done. The Nets are likely looking to get younger and Vucevic might not be intriguing for them and even if he is the Bulls would likely have to include multiple first-round picks in the deal.
A package of Vucevic, Williams, and Coby White also get the deal done on the trade machine but again first-round picks would certainly be involved. The Bulls could also potentially offer a package centered around DeMar DeRozan.
The Bulls have been unwilling to include Williams in trade talks in the past but the chance to acquire Durant almost certainly changes that. The biggest question for the Bulls will be if they can put together the best package to acquire Durant.
The Suns can offer a trade built around center Deandre Ayton while the Heat could offer something including Tyler Herro. If the Pelicans choose to get involved they could offer a package built around Zion Williamson or Brandon Ingram.
All of those trades might be more enticing for the Nets because they are built around younger stars. If the Bulls can put something together and pull off a trade for Durant it could end up being one of the best offseasons in team history.