Latest update: Both Durant, Mitchell trades likely going to take time
With NBA executives out of the oppressive heat of Las Vegas — and many off on vacation — the NBA free agency and trade markets have shifted down a gear in intensity.
Which is to say, it may take a while for the Kevin Durant and Donovan Mitchell trades to come together, Adrian Wojnarowski said on ESPN.
With Durant, there remain no offers close to what the Nets are seeking, Wojnarowski reports.
Woj: "Brooklyn simply doesn't have a deal out there that's good enough to justify trading Kevin Durant with four years left on his contract. They continue to talk to teams around the league but simply, no one is meeting that threshold."— ClutchFans (@clutchfans) July 19, 2022
Which may be okay with Durant if the goal with his trade request was to get his friend Kyrie Irving traded. However, there is no movement on the Irving front either, for a couple of reasons. First, the Nets want to get the Durant situation dealt with first (and if he wants to stay in Brooklyn, they need a clear sign he plans to stay but is okay with Irving leaving). Second, the only serious suitor for Irving remains the Lakers, who need to move on from Russell Westbrook in that deal, which means bringing in a third team to absorb and then buy out the former MVP. For the Lakers, incentivizing the Nets to part with Irving and a third team to take on Westbrook could mean giving up both their 2027 and 2029 first-round picks, and the Lakers have been hesitant to do that.
With Deandre Ayton staying in Phoenix, the Heat may be the frontrunner in the KD sweepstakes, and they have turned their focus more to him rather than Mitchell. However, the Nets are lukewarm on a Tyler Herro/Duncan Robinson-based trade package. Don’t be shocked if another team — maybe Toronto or New Orleans — makes a push for Durant in the coming weeks, but this could well drag out close to, or into training camp.
Tony Jones of The Athletic said on Marc Stein’s Spotify live the Jazz are looking for five first-round picks for Mitchell, plus young players. The Knicks can meet that, but what protections are on the picks and what players would come to Utah — they are rumored to want Summer League standout Quentin Grimes, who the Knicks would ideally like to keep — are all part of the negotiations. Which are progressing slowly at this point.
The sides likely, eventually, work out a trade. Just don’t expect it to happen quickly.