The Brooklyn Nets reportedly prefer to keep Kevin Durant because they believe the trade offers they have received are unsatisfactory.
“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?”
Durant’s business manager, Rich Kleiman, told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski last month (h/t ESPN’s Tim Bontemps) that the superstar had requested a trade. Wojnarowski added that the Phoenix Suns and Miami Heat are atop Durant’s wish list of destinations.
Durant signed with the Nets in 2019, but he has only played two seasons for the team since he missed the entire first season with a torn Achilles.
Following a second-round playoff exit in 2021, KD signed a new four-year, $194.22 million contract with the Nets.
Just one year into that deal, the 33-year-old apparently wants out, although the Nets are under no obligation to trade him.
While the Nets likely anticipated a huge package of draft picks and players for a future Hall of Famer with 12 All-Star selections, four scoring titles, two NBA championships, two NBA Finals MVP awards and one NBA MVP award to his credit, those types of offers seemingly haven’t come in.
One school of thought is that the Utah Jazz may have shaken up the market after they received four first-round picks and several players for trading All-Star center Rudy Gobert to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The Nets would undoubtedly want more for a player of Durant’s caliber, but teams may be resistant to parting with that type of compensation.
Durant has missed 64 games out of 154 over the past two seasons, but he remains an elite player.
Last season, the 6’10” forward averaged 29.9 points, 7.4 rebounds, 6.4 assists and 2.1 three-pointers made per game while shooting 51.8 percent from the field and 38.3 percent from beyond the arc.
The Nets traded James Harden to the Philadelphia 76ers last season for a package headlined by guard Ben Simmons, but general manager Sean Marks and Co. never got to see Simmons play alongside Durant and Kyrie Irving since he missed the entire season because of an injury.
It seemed like the three of them were not going to play together, but the tide may be turning if the Nets favor keeping Durant and if Irving really wants to stay in Brooklyn after opting into the final year of his contract.
The Nets would likely be contenders in the Eastern Conference next season with a core of Durant, Irving and Simmons, but whether that happens may be dependent on whether the offers for KD get better in the coming weeks and months.