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2019 NBA Draft rumors: Live updates, latest news, draft-day trade talk

2019 NBA Draft rumors: Live updates, latest news, draft-day trade talk

The 2019 NBA Draft is here. 

The Raptors knocked off the injury-ravaged Warriors just a week ago to win their first NBA championship, but we're already on to the first phase of the offseason.

On Thursday night, Zion Williamson, R.J. Barrett, Ja Morant and others will have their NBA dreams realized when commissioner Adam Silver calls their name. 

The lead-up to the NBA draft also should hold plenty of intrigue. The Lakers reportedly are trying to clear more salary-cap space in an effort to add another max slot alongside LeBron James and the soon-to-arrive Anthony Davis. The Warriors, meanwhile, are looking for a way to add talent to a roster that was hit hard by severe injuries in the NBA Finals. How will the Kings use their three second-round picks? It's sure to be a fun day.

You can follow all of the draft-day trade rumors, news and talk below:

9:33 p.m.: The Warriors reportedly sold the rights to their final pick of the night to the Utah Jazz, who used it on Yale's Mye Oni. 

9:00 p.m.: The Knicks have acquired the No. 47 pick from the Kings.

 

7:47 p.m.: The Wizards have acquired Jonathan Simmons and the No. 42 pick from the 76ers.

7:44 p.m.: The Cavs have traded back into the first round.

7:25 p.m.: One pick before the Warriors, the Clippers swooped in and acquired the No. 27 pick from the Nets.

7:19 p.m.: The Celtics will look drastically different next season, with center Aron Baynes on the move to Phoenix.

7:07 p.m.: Boston didn't keep the No. 24 overall pick very long, as it traded the selection to Phoenix.

6:46 p.m.: Oklahoma City has gotten its wish and traded down.

6:39 p.m.: The Celtics and 76ers have made a trade (Philly clearly hasn't learned its lesson). Boston will use the No. 20 pick to select Washington's Matisse Thybulle and trade him to Philadelphia for the No. 24 and No. 33 picks.

6:01 p.m.: The Thunder continue to look to unload salary and are trying to entice teams by including the No. 21 overall pick.

4:53 p.m. PT: The Cavs are trying to unload JR Smith's contract. Good luck with that.

4:48 p.m.: Oregon center Bol Bol is a project, but teams really want him. The Knicks appear to be trying to trade into the back end of the first round to get the 7-foot-2 big man from Sudan.

4:42 p.m.: Minnesota isn't sitting still, and is shopping the No. 6 overall pick it acquired for Phoenix earlier in the day.

3:39 p.m.: It looks like Darius Garland is headed to Cleveland tonight.

3:08 p.m.: The Hawks made the move up, reportedly with their eye on a shooter.

2:57 p.m.: The No. 4 overall pick appears to be on the move again.

2:45 p.m.: Will the TJ Warren trade help the Pacers snag their desired free-agent point guard?

2:27 p.m.: The Pacers reportedly have acquired some much-needed scoring help.

2:20 p.m.: The top three picks reportedly are locked in.

12:20 p.m.: Could the Suns be wheeling and dealing tonight?

9:40 a.m. Could the Warriors try moving up in the draft?

8:19 a.m.: Are the Knicks shifting course?

7:05 a.m.: The Warriors wasted no time getting to work Thursday.

5:46 a.m.: Boston is scrambling to change the direction of its franchise in the wake of Kyrie Irving and Al Horford's expected exit.

Kevin Durant can return for NBA playoffs if healthy, Adam Silver says

Kevin Durant can return for NBA playoffs if healthy, Adam Silver says

The NBA is prepared to come back on July 31.

Is Kevin Durant?

Durant hasn't played in a game since rupturing his Achilles in Game 5 of the NBA Finals last year. That was his last game with the Warriors before signing with the Brooklyn Nets last summer, and his only competitive on-court action has come in scrimmages with his new teammates. Brooklyn general manager Bobby Marks called the status of Durant's return "a $110 million question" last month, but Marks left the door open for his return.

So did NBA commissioner Adam Silver in an interview with Turner Sports "Inside the NBA" on Thursday, telling panelist Charles Barkley he didn't think it was unfair that players who sustained what were thought to be season-ending injuries to come back when the season restarts.

"We're gonna allow it," Silver said. "And I'd only say, Charles, that this has been the back-and-forth with our teams. There's so much here that's not fair, and we're choosing among multiple bad alternatives given the (coronavirus) pandemic we're dealing with. ... I think, ultimately, to the extent a team has a healthy roster and those players are able to come back, they are eligible to play."

Kevin Durant said last October on ESPN's "First Take" that he didn't expect to play during the 2019-20 season. Durant wasn't set to travel with the Nets when they were scheduled to visit the Warriors at Chase Center on March 12, but the rest of the Nets never played there, either. The NBA suspended its season on March 11 due to the pandemic.

The Nets, as well as the 21 other teams who will make the trip to the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, will play eight regular-season games to determine seeding before the playoffs begin. Brooklyn, currently in seventh place in the Eastern Conference, would have to play in a play-in series with a slip to eighth or ninth in the conference.

Durant wouldn't be at the peak of his powers after not playing in any games, let alone those with seeding and (eventually) playoff elimination on the line. Inserting a two-time Finals MVP into the lineup would represent a slight improvement, however, as would getting point guard Kyrie Irving, who hasn't played since Feb. 1, back on the court.

[RELATED: Kerr issues message to Warriors fans about his lineups]

Rich Kleiman, Durant's agent, couldn't envision the superstar returning when he was asked about the possibility in March. Nearly three months have passed since then, and close to four will have passed when the Nets would begin training camp in Orlando under the NBA's plan.

If Durant's able to come back, he has the NBA's blessing to do so.

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Steve Kerr issues message to questioning Warriors fans about lineups

Steve Kerr issues message to questioning Warriors fans about lineups

Over Steve Kerr's first five seasons as head coach, the Warriors reached the NBA Finals every year and won three titles.

Despite the unprecedented success, certain corners of the fan base have been vocal (on Twitter mostly) in criticizing some of the eight-time NBA champion's rotations and/or five-man combinations.

Kerr was a guest Wednesday on "The TK Show" podcast with Tim Kawakami of The Athletic, and addressed that topic during a conversation about "The Last Dance" documentary on the Chicago Bulls.

"Phil (Jackson) was the guy who was never afraid to play anyone in any situation," Kerr said. "So when Warriors fans are up in arms about the lineup that I throw out there, they should really blame Phil because that's where I learned it. (laughter)."

Now that's some funny stuff right there.

The franchise adopted the "Strength in Numbers" mantra the moment Kerr arrived in May 2014, and the Warriors' depth definitely played a part in the team's incredible success from 2015 to 2019.

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Without diving too deep into it, Dub Nation certainly questioned some of Kerr's decisions in Game 7 of the 2016 NBA Finals. But we will leave it at that.

As for Kerr's philosophy, this is what he said back in early May:

[RELATED: Why Kerr calls '14 Dubs memory one of best feelings of life]

The 2015-16 NBA Coach of the Year absolutely is right about this. That dynamic is very powerful and helps build a strong culture.

No coach is perfect. In the end, Warriors fans should trust Kerr's judgment and decision making.

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