NBA

NBA rumours: Warriors ‘interested’ in Kevin Durant trade with Nets

ADVERTISEMENT

When Kevin Durant requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets last week, the common belief was that 28 other NBA teams should be interested in acquiring one of the greatest scorers in NBA history. Some franchises may not stand a chance, but they should all be interested.

The only team that could be automatically ruled out was the Warriors, given their history with Durant and the fact that they had just won the NBA title without him, right?

ADVERTISEMENT

Not so fast.

Andscape’s Marc J. Spears reported Sunday, citing sources, that the Warriors actually have “an interest” in Durant, in addition to “half the league.”

Spears took to ESPN Radio to further explain why that makes sense.

“The only team I’m telling you to keep an eye on is the Golden State Warriors,” Spears said. “Golden State might have the best package for both parties. Jordan Poole, Jonathan Kuminga, All-Star Andrew Wiggins, former No. 2 pick James Wiseman. What the Nets want is a young All-Star and maybe want a future All-Star. They’re all under 30. They also want picks, maybe the ability to trade picks. But if you can get those four players, if I’m the Nets, I am very, very happy.

“For Kevin Durant, the Warriors – they know very well [Durant] and vice versa. He knows where to live in San Francisco. He knows how the offense works. He knows he can win a championship there. Yeah, Steve Kerr should probably figure some things out. But with each passing day, I hear that the Warriors are interested in young loot, people being happy on both sides. For me, the Golden State option is the best option.”

Now, that looks like a huge chunk of players for the Warriors to give up for Durant. And it’s. But that’s in line with Brooklyn’s asking price.

The Athletic’s Jon Krawczynski reported Friday, citing sources, that the Nets are asking for an “established All-Star and a mountain of picks.”

As unlikely as it is for the Warriors to bring Durant back, the irony is that after everything they’ve been through since he left in 2019, they now have arguably the best package of young players available to acquire him. And unlike the other teams vying for Durant, they wouldn’t completely empty their roster to do so.

Other teams trading one or two “established All-Stars” for Durant might not have a championship roster remaining. But the Warriors would still have Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Kevon Looney.

As for the draft pick part of the equation, the Warriors only have one future first-round pick tied to another trade. Again, ironically, when Durant left in 2019, it forced Golden State to trade Andre Iguodala to the Memphis Grizzlies and they tied their 2024 first-round pick with top-4 protection.

Barring a catastrophic collapse in the standings, the Warriors will pass that pick to the Grizzlies in 2024. That leaves the Warriors with their picks of 2023, 2025, 2026, 2027, 2028 and 2029.

The Utah Jazz got four future first-round picks from the Minnesota Timberwolves for Rudy Gobert. But the players they picked up weren’t as strong as what the Warriors could potentially offer Brooklyn. Could the best player package reduce the number of draft picks in the deal? That remains to be seen.

Whether or not the Warriors are a legitimate contender to land Durant will be revealed over the next few days or weeks. They are definitely one of the best equipped teams to meet Brooklyn’s asking price.

RELATED: Like Warriors, Nets Learn All About KD’s Restless Soul

But would he even want to come back to a place he left because he never felt like he belonged? Would the Warriors even want to recreate the media circus that had befallen them from 2016 to 2019? Would Curry welcome Durant a second time? Does it even make sense to trade all these young assets, who fit well into the Warriors system and are the future of the franchise, for a guy who turns 34 in September?

A meeting that seemed like a “non-starter” now has legs. Time will tell if it was all just a smokescreen or if the Villains will come back together.

Download and follow the Dubs Talk podcast

ADVERTISEMENT