Latest on Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving

The Warriors are part of the teams interested in Nets Super star Kevin Durantsources tell ESPN’s Marc J. Spears (Twitter link). As Spears notes, more than half of the teams in the league would be interested in Durant, so it’s no surprise that Golden State is one of them.

Still, there are plenty of reasons to be skeptical of the Warriors emerging as a legitimate contender for Durant. Appearing on ESPN Radio (Twitter audio link) Spears proposed a package that would include Andre Wiggins, Jordan Poole, Jonathan Kumingaand James Wisemanbut the Nets would not be allowed to acquire Wiggins without trading Ben Simmonsand there is no indication that they intend to move Simmons, especially since they should be selling him for pennies on the dollar at this point.

Without Wiggins included, either Klay Thompson Where Draymond Green would be needed for pay-equalization purposes, and it’s hard to imagine the Warriors breaking their long-term championship core to reunite with Durant, who elected to leave the organization as a free agent he three years ago. Earlier this week, Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer cited sources with knowledge of the situation who indicated that Golden State is the only team that is not “a tangible option” for Durant.

While we await further developments on Durant’s front, we also have a few notes for him and his Nets teammate – and fellow trade candidate – Kyrie Irving:

  • League staff who spoke to Brian Lewis of the New York Post said the Nets are “adamant” about snapping up All-Star-caliber talent in any Durant contract, and are in no rush to budge. League sources tell Lewis nothing is close to being done at this stage.
  • Appearing on The Rally on Bally Sports (Twitter video link) on Saturday, Shams Charania of The Athletic suggested the Sixers are among the teams to watch for Irving. It’s very hard to imagine Philadelphia making serious play for Kyrie – it would either have to part ways with James Harden or in motion Tobias Harris to reunite Irving with Harden, whose business request out of Brooklyn was reportedly driven in part by Kyrie’s vaccination decision.
  • For what it’s worth, FS1’s Nick Wright (Twitter link) reports that there is “no appetite” for Irving in Philadelphia and the Sixers did not initiate any commercial negotiations for him. According to Lewis, the 76ers are keeping tabs on Irving and briefly spoke to the Nets, but he learns from a source that “nothing happened there.”
  • Charania also identified the Mavericks as a possible suitor for Irving, but Brad Townsend of The Dallas Morning News is unconvinced, writing that Kyrie is “a desperate team’s acquisition”. Townsend doesn’t believe Dallas is so desperate.
  • The Lakers remain the most likely business partner for Irving. According to Ian Begley of SNY.tv (Twitter video link), there’s been some optimism on the Lakers side that they’re willing to make a deal with the Nets.
  • In his latest Substack article, Marc Stein says he thinks Irving is destined to end up with the Lakers. As Stein writes, he heard “repeated rumblings” that james lebron is pushing for the team to acquire Irving, and it’s “impossible to ignore the growing expectation across the league” that Kyrie will land in Los Angeles.

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