Trade Rumors Swirl Around Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant’s ringless stint with the Brooklyn Nets could potentially come to a close, and trade rumors are flying. 

Over the past 15 seasons, Durant has traveled around the league, starting with the Seattle Sonics in 2007, who became the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2008, then to the Warriors in 2016 and most recently, joining the Nets in 2019. Last July, Durant signed a four-year, $194 million extension with the Nets.

But in February 2022, Nets General Manager Sean Marks said the franchise had “seen enough” of the Nets’ “big three” — Kyrie Irving, James Harden and Durant — according to the NBA. This past season, the Nets waited for the three to play together, which never ended up happening for more than a handful of games. Irving refused to get vaccinated, Harden was exploring his free agency and Durant was recovering from a knee injury. Harden was then traded to the Philadelphia 76ers, Irving ended up signing the last year of his max contract and Durant requested to be traded. 

Despite averaging 29.9 points, 7.4 rebounds and 6.4 assists per game during the 2021 season, the 12-time all-star has not seen any trade offers surface over the past months. The lack of movement from other teams in the league may seem surprising, as Durant is considered to be one of the best players in the league by analysts across the board, including from SB Nation, CBS Sports and Fox Sports.

According to Fox Sports, Durant’s first-choice destination is the Phoenix Suns, followed by the Miami Heat. There have been rumors surrounding  Phoenix’s Mikal Bridges and future first-round draft picks, but no offers have been made. 

Some analysts also suspect that the Celtics will make a move for Durant in exchange for Jaylen Brown, two other players and future draft picks, but, once again, there has been no official movement from either side. 

In a recent talk with Nets owner Joe Tsai, Durant reportedly demanded to either be traded or for Tsai to fire head coach Steve Nash, per CBS Sports. Tsai took to Twitter  to confirm that he supports his coaching staff and will not be firing anyone, writing, “Our front office and coaching staff have my support. We will make decisions in the best interest of the Brooklyn Nets.”

The 2022-2023 season is quickly approaching, and Durant’s future is not yet certain. He could go to one of his preferred teams, with Phoenix or Miami making a blockbuster trade for him, or another mystery team in the league could engage in trade talks with the Nets. As of right now, it seems that Durant will remain in Brooklyn until his extension expires.