The Boston Celtics have grabbed a ticket in the Kevin Durant sweepstakes.
The Celtics have engaged with the Brooklyn Nets in trade talks regarding Durant, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported early Monday morning. The Athletic's Shams Charania followed by reporting that Boston actually sent a trade offer to Brooklyn for Durant, which the Nets turned down and countered.
Here are the details of the Celtics' initial offer -- which included star wing Jaylen Brown -- and the Nets' counter, per Charania:
"The Celtics offered Brown, guard Derrick White and a draft pick to the Nets for Durant, sources said. The proposal was rejected, and Brooklyn has asked Boston -- in any proposal -- to include Brown, Defensive Player of the Year Marcus Smart, draft picks and potentially one more rotation player, those sources added."
That Boston apparently is willing to include Brown in a trade for Durant is notable. Brown and Jayson Tatum helped lead the Celtics to the NBA Finals last season as one of the best young duos in the league, but Brown's talent, age (25) and contract situation (signed through 2023-24) make him a valuable trade chip that could help the C's land one of the greatest players in NBA history.
While the Celtics are "less inclined" to include Smart in addition to Brown in a Durant trade, Charania reports the Celtics "have emerged as a serious possibility" as a Durant landing spot and have "tremendous interest" in acquiring the 12-time All-Star.
It's worth considering the sources of these reports, as they could be emanating from Durant's camp or the Nets in a ploy to gain leverage. But for now, it appears Boston is very much in the hunt for Durant this offseason.