Nets ‘Covet’ 3x All-Star as Potential Kevin Durant Successor

Brooklyn Nets GM Sean Marks

Getty Brooklyn Nets GM Sean Marks addresses the media prior to a game against the New York Knicks.

The Brooklyn Nets recently extended the contract for their general manager Sean Marks. The deal keeps Marks at the helm of the Nets for the ‘foreseeable future’ as Kristian Winfield from the New York Daily News wrote. Alex Schiffer from The Athletic wrote a conflicting report stating that multiple sources told him Marks and the Nets had not reached an extension. Winfield shared that the extension was signed shortly after Kevin Durant requested to be traded from the Nets. Marks now has the duty of trading Durant or Kyrie Irving with the security of a long-term contract. 

With uncertainty around the Durant and Irving situation, the Nets continue looking for what their roster will look like next season, if it will have Durant or Irving on it, and how they round out the final spots available. One target that has been named for the Nets next season is Donovan Mitchell, who Brooklyn has as a possible successor to Durant, as reported by Marc Stein. 

Mitchell as Potential Durant Successor

Stein in his recent column, mentioned Donovan Mitchell as a name that the Nets may be coveting with the potential of a departure from Kevin Durant. 

“Mitchell is Miami’s favorite current trade target not named Kevin Durant,” Stein wrote. “Brooklyn is believed to covet Mitchell with a similar fervor to install him as a potential successor to Durant as the Nets’ cornerstone player,” Stein wrote

For the Nets to deal for Mitchell, they would have to include Ben Simmons on any potential deals because of the max rookie extension clause that prevents team’s from acquiring another player on the max rookie extension. After the Utah Jazz got four draft picks in exchange for Rudy Gobert, draft picks may be a feature of the Nets deal. The Nets also have pieces like Cam Thomas, Joe Harris, and the Simmons, as mentioned before. 

Nets Still May Keep Kevin Durant

While Donovan Mitchell is a potential target for the Nets, there still is a major possibility that Brooklyn keeps their cornerstone forward. Windhorst reported on the July 15 episode of Get Up, that the Nets current plan with Durant means keeping the forward in town. 

“As for Kevin Durant, here’s what there is: nothing. There is no movement here. The executives are leaving Summer League. The executives are going on vacation. At this point, the Nets’ preferred situation is for Kevin Durant to stay with them. There is no trade they’ve got that they like.

“A huge question and what the league is in some ways waiting for is what does Durant feel? He’s the one who asked for the trade. Have his feelings changed with some of the avenues for trades dimming?” Windhorst said

Have Durant’s feelings changed about the trade? The Nets have made some underrated free agent signings, but is it enough? The team hopes to bring Durant back for another year. He has four years remaining on his contract, and if the price isn’t right, it doesn’t make sense for the Nets to force it. If the Nets do trade their center, perhaps Mitchell is an excellent piece to move forward with in Brooklyn. 

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