With free agency just a couple of days away, the Nets are prepared to lose both Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, according to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst.
“The Nets are putting out there right now that they are prepared to lose both Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant,” he said Monday. “They’d rather lose them both than go through what they went through last season, which was a miserable season under the situation that Kyrie Irving contributed to creating.”
Irving has until Wednesday to make a decision on his $36.9 million player option for the 2022–23 season and if he were to leave the team, it may prompt Durant to seek a trade. According to The Athletic, a deal for Durant would warrant return similar to the haul the Pelicans got when they sent Anthony Davis to the Lakers back in 2019.
Irving has provided Brooklyn with a list of teams he’d prefer the team to execute a sign-and-trade with, but his actual goal is reportedly to end up on the Lakers, according to Sam Amick of The Athletic.
Irving and Durant’s proverbial marriage may be coming to an ugly end after it never really started. Irving has only played in 103 of 246 regular-season games since joining the Nets and has missed games mostly due to personal reasons and most notably due to coronavirus restrictions. He refused to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and wasn’t allowed to play for most of this past season because of New York City’s vaccination mandate.
Durant only appeared in 55 games due to injury and Brooklyn finished with the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference. The team was swept by the Celtics in the first round of the playoffs.
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