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Another sign Durant not going to Warriors: Nets don’t like Wiggins, Poole trade

Kurt Helin runs through his thoughts on the NBA's hierarchy for the 2022-23 season, with the Warriors atop the list and the Clippers regaining their spot among the league's elite.

How many ways can it be said Kevin Durant will not be traded to the Warriors?

Stephen Curry said he likes the Warriors’ roster the way it is. Golden State GM Bob Myers said, “I like our team and where it’s at.” The Warriors roster is locked in. Meanwhile, the only thing we’ve heard from Kevin Durant is that he hasn’t quite figured out TikTok.

If you want more evidence, ESPN’s Zach Lowe said on the Lowe Post podcast the Nets aren’t interested in a package based around Andrew Wiggins, and Brooklyn would have to trade Ben Simmons to take Wiggins anyway because of the designated rookie rule (hat tip NBC Sports Bay Area).

“You would end up keeping a Kuminga or a Moody. The issues are Wiggins and Simmons. You run into the designated rookie fiasco. The intel I have is that the Nets are not super high on Wiggins or Poole as sort of centerpiece players. Then you get to the other guys who are relatively unproven in the NBA. So I don’t know if there ever really was a deal there that the Nets would have done. Obviously, you have to explore it if you’re the Warriors.”

How good Jordan Poole ultimately will be — an All-Star? More of a starter and quality role player? — is debated in league circles, but even at the high end of that spectrum he’s not “trade Kevin Durant for him” good. Maybe the Nets would warm up to the idea of Poole with Jonathan Kuminga (or Moses Moody, although Kuminga has the higher upside if he can reach it), but Wiggins has to be part of the trade to make the money work. And under the designated rookie rule teams can’t have two players they traded for on max rookie contract extensions at the same time, which means to bring in Wiggins the Nets have to send Simmons out. And the Nets don’t want to trade low on Simmons.

All of which brings us back to the first sentence of this story: How many ways can it be said Durant will not be traded to the Warriors?

Whether he gets traded at all will be something to watch heading into training camp, but the Warriors are not worth discussing in that deal.