Recently reports have come out that with Kyrie Irving on the trade market, Kevin Durant might ask out if he leaves. With the Nets hoping not to extend Irving to a max contract they may look to change things up. The difference between Durant and Irving is Durant has been so much more consistent these past years. He’s done nothing but help contribute to winning basketball and may be desperate to win after the Warriors’ recent championship.
After slowly giving up on the thoughts of a super team by trading James Harden, Brooklyn has some tough decisions to make. If Durant does want out Brooklyn has many options as he’s a very sought-after piece. These are some possible Durant trades if Brooklyn also decides to move on from Irving.
Kevin Durant Trade Rumors
Phoenix gets: Kevin Durant
Brooklyn gets: Mikal Bridges + Deandre Ayton + Cameron Johnson + first-round picks in 2024 and 2026
Phoenix in the last two years has been seen as a serious contender yet have fallen short both time. Chris Paul just gets older and older and his championship window is closing. He still provides quality minutes as an All-NBA caliber talent. Adding a scorer at the wing in Durant will make this offense unstoppable. Devin Booker is gifted offensively as well but struggled this past season putting up only 11 in a closeout game against Dallas. Durant’s consistency mixed with the star guard play out in Phoenix would make them easy title favorites.
Phoenix feeling they don’t need star big men anymore after this last year’s playoffs allows Brooklyn to capitalize on a star young big man. Ayton averaged 17 points and 10 rebounds last season despite not having the offense run through him. In Brooklyn, he would have a chance to truly break out as a star. Adding that with Johnson’s three-point shooting and Bridges’ defense would still allow them to remain somewhat competitive in the East. If Ben Simmons shows he can be as good as he was two years ago Brooklyn will still be a playoff team while gaining young talent.
New York Knicks
New York gets: Kevin Durant
Brooklyn gets: Obi Toppin + Immanuel Quickley + Mitchell Robinson sign-and-trade + first-round picks in 2022 and 2024+ 2023 first-round pick via Dallas
If there’s a star available, New York will always be in trade talks. New York is desperate for consistency and wins and adding Durant will do that. Durant would be a good mentor to RJ Barrett and help him reach his true potential. Pairing those two alongside Julius Randle would make this team a serious playoff team in the East. They also keep a surprising amount of depth such as Evan Fournier and Alec Burks to add shooting outside and an interior presence in Nerlens Noel. This sheer amount of depth is something Durant hasn’t enjoyed since they gave up serious depth for Harden last year.
Brooklyn could essentially go into a full rebuild after this move. This is similar to a Harden-level trade where Houston then flipped the young talent for even more picks. Toppin and Quickley are quality young players who haven’t truly gotten a chance to play the minutes they deserve under Tom Thibodeau. As for Robinson, he’s gotten the opportunity and shows he’s an amazing defender averaging 2 blocks per game over his career. All these players would get a chance to play quality minutes while adding in serious draft capital. This also frees up a ton of salary if Brooklyn was interested in pursuing a young talent in the free agency market.
Atlanta gets: Kevin Durant
Brooklyn gets: Onyeka Okongwu + Jalen Johnson + Kevin Huerter + Danilo Gallinari + first-round picks in 2022 and 2024
After a disappointing first-round exit, Atlanta wants to capitalize and find a second star to pair alongside Trae Young. Bringing in Durant as a secondary scorer would do wonders for this young team. Durant has played alongside a player similar to Young’s play style in Stephen Curry and we all know how that worked out. Young may not have the off-ball movement like Curry but has the shooting and playmaking that will open up the midrange game for Durant. Durant will have multiple shooters around him with Bogdan Bogdanovic and John Collins which he lacked in Brooklyn. He also won’t have to stress as much on a defense anchored by De’Andre Hunter.
Okongwu and Johnson didn’t get a ton of minutes to truly prove themselves but played nicely when they did play. Both have a high potential for Brooklyn to rebuild around. Huerter also is still young at the age of 23 and is a nice scorer when given the opportunity. Gallinari is a simple salary filler but can be flipped down the line to a contending team in order to bring in new assets. All this paired with a couple of draft picks makes Brooklyn’s rebuilding dreams a lot easier.