July 4 passed and still no Kevin Durant trade for the Brooklyn Nets superstar.
But you have to figure the franchise is letting a bidding war break out. Because this is a top-three player with a four-year deal you’re trading, so the package has to be top notch.
Obviously, it’ll include tons of first-round picks and swaps (I hope, given what the Minnesota Timberwolves gave up for Rudy Gobert), which I’ll include below with every deal I’m proposing below. But I’m going to keep this casual and doing this in a vacuum — no salary cap implications, no using Trade Machine, but I will stick to avoiding players on designated rookie extensions:
1 Golden State Warriors
The package: Jordan Poole, James Wiseman, Jonathan Kuminga, four first-rounders and one pick swap.
Yes, this is the one that’s been floated:
Warriors have interest in trading for Kevin Durant, per @MarcJSpears
Golden State could offer the best package for both sides: Jordan Poole, Andrew Wiggins, Jonathan Kuminga & James Wiseman
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) July 3, 2022
This is a tough one to stomach for Warriors fans given the roster that just won a title. But it’s KD, coming back to team with Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. How’d that go the last time? Of course the Dubs can mortgage their future when they know that this combo will immediately work together again, without question. For what it’s worth: Wiggins can’t be dealt in this situation because he’s on a designated rookie extension.
2 Toronto Raptors
The package: OG Anunoby, Scottie Barnes, Gary Trent, Chris Boucher, three first-round picks and two swaps.
My pal Bryan Kalbrosky listed Barnes as one of the dudes who could be part of a trade package, and I’ve got to say: Raptors fans won’t like it, but that’s what it might take to get KD.
3 Phoenix Suns
The package: DeAndre Ayton (sign-and-trade), Mikal Bridges, Cameron Johnson, four first-round picks and two swaps.
The picks aren’t going to matter if the already-dangerous Suns get KD.
4 Miami Heat
The package: Tyler Herro, Duncan Robinson, Max Strus, Gabe Vincent, four first-round picks and one pick swap.
It’s not as good as some of the others above, but it’s really not bad!
5 Memphis Grizzlies
The package: Desmond Bane, Jaren Jackson Jr., Brandon Clarke, four first-round picks and two pick swaps.
The Grizzlies are mega deep and keep getting deeper. So why not swap some of that for Durant to team with Ja?
6 New Orleans Pelicans
The package: Brandon Ingram, Trey Murphy III, Jaxson Hayes, Herbert Jones, five first-round picks and one swap.
I tried, Pels fans. But Jones has to be involved if the franchise wants to be a part of this.
7 Portland Trail Blazers
The package: Anfernee Simons, Josh Hart, Shaedon Sharpe, four first-round picks.
Why else did they draft Sharpe? To deal him for a win-now player!
8 Atlanta Hawks
The package: John Collins, Onyeka Okongwu, De’Andre Hunter, AJ Griffin, three first-round picks and two swaps.
Not the best, but an underrated combo.
9 Boston Celtics
The package: Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart, Payton Pritchard, four first-round picks and two picks swaps.
Alright, I’m just messing around with this one. I don’t think I’d do this if I’m the Celtics after the season they just had. But … they have to consider this, right?
10 Los Angeles Lakers
Package: Russell Westbrook, Anthony Davis, Talen Horton-Tucker, Austin Reaves, any draft picks they can legally trade (Update: It was pointed out to me that they don’t have much to deal at the moment!)
Another one where I’m completely messing around, but if the Lakers want to return to relevance and want to do it quickly, here you go.