Nets, Celtics discuss Kevin Durant-Jaylen Brown swap: report

The Nets have received their best and most realistic trade offer in the Kevin Durant sweepstakes: a potential deal centered around Boston Celtics All-Star guard Jaylen Brown.

The Celtics have made an offer for Durant, who requested a trade on June 30, including Brown, the one-time All-Star touted as one of the NBA’s premier two-way wings. Is. sixth man Derek White; And a draft pick, according to The Athletic. The Nets rejected the Celtics’ offer and asked Boston to add Defensive Player of the Year Marcus Smart, an additional rotation player and draft compensation.

As it stands, Brown is the best individual player the Nets have offered in the Durant deal. Other notable offers include Michael Bridges from the Phoenix Suns and OG Anunoby from the Toronto Raptors.

The Nets are looking for the best deal possible in the wake of Durant’s trade request, and for good reason: He’s a franchise-changing talent, a two-time NBA Finals MVP who ranks as one of the best scorers in NBA history. known as. But after two recent blockbuster trades – the Hawks’ acquisition of Dejonte Murray for Danilo Gallinari, three draft picks and a pick swap to the San Antonio Spurs; And the Rudy Gobert megadeal between the Utah Jazz and Minnesota Timberwolves that sent four rotation players, a 2022 first-round draft pick, four future first-round picks and a pick swap — any team to meet the Nets’ asking price. Not ready.

The Nets are demanding multiple All-Star caliber players, or one All-Star, rotation players and draft compensation. Forfeiting such assets would essentially result in a team trading for Durant and potentially removing them from championship contention once any deal is completed.

That’s why the Celtics are easily positioned as a team capable of pulling off a deal and possessing the firepower to compete for a trade resulting from the deal. After sweeping the Nets from the first round and losing to the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals, the Celtics improved their roster by trading for Malcolm Brogdon and signing Gallinari as a free agent. Boston also owns all of its draft picks after 2023, with only the top 12 protected and will likely deal to the Pacers next summer.

However, the Celtics must find ways to improve their roster if they hope to return to the NBA Finals. They clipped a dysfunctional Nets team that lacked chemistry in the first round, beat the Khris Middleton-less Milwaukee Bucks in the second round, then handled the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Heat advanced to the conference finals by defeating the Philadelphia 76ers, who were without MVP candidate Joel Embiid for the first two games of the series.

Acquiring Durant is the closest thing to guaranteeing Boston a return to the biggest stage, especially since they are unwilling to part with Jayson Tatum in any Durant deal. The duo of Tatum and Durant will easily become the best duo in basketball.

Only, of course, if Boston doesn’t get its roster to acquire him, which is what most teams face in talks with the Nets to trade Durant. For Brooklyn, getting Brown and a healthy Ben Simmons creates one of the best wing defensive sets in all of basketball. It’s unclear, however, what the rest of the roster looks like as a result of the Durant deal, or whether Kyrie Irving is part of the picture after opting out of the final year of his $37M contract.

The Celtics’ offer is the latest chapter in a weeks-long saga resulting from Durant’s trade request. Durant has four years of $198M left on his contract, giving the illusion that the Nets can wait him out, but the last thing they need is a messy situation dragging into training camp and the regular season.