Kyrie Irving could also be on his way out of Brooklyn after Kevin Durant requested a trade from the Nets on Thursday, and it appears the veteran point guard's value isn't as high as it once was.
"As I've talked to league executives over the last couple of hours, they believe that the price for Kyrie Irving is going down, down, down," ESPN's Brian Windhorst said Thursday on NBA Today.
That said, there appears to be no shortage of suitors for Irving.
"But I've also been told to keep an eye on the L.A. Clippers. Now I know that they just signed John Wall, and they look like they're set at the point guard position, but it's possible that the price would potentially be so low the Clippers would at least have to revisit the concept," Windhorst added.
"Also, I've been told the Dallas Mavericks may kick the tires on that deal."
Irving picked up his $36.5 million player option with the Nets for the 2022-23 season by Wednesday's deadline, which was before Durant made his trade request.
“Normal people keep the world going, but those who dare to be different lead us into tomorrow. I’ve made my decision to opt in. See you in the fall. A11even," Irving told Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium on Wednesday.
With Durant expected to depart Brooklyn, it's possible Irving will also request a trade this summer. Even if he doesn't, the Nets could opt to move on from the seven-time All-Star, who will become a free agent after the upcoming campaign.
Irving was limited to just 29 games during the 2021-22 season as he was unable to play in Brooklyn's home games until March due to New York City's COVID-19 vaccination mandate for indoor arenas.
The 30-year-old was still effective when he was on the court, averaging 27.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 5.8 assists while shooting 46.9 percent from the floor and 41.8 percent from deep.
While Wall is set to join the Clippers, presumably as the team's starting point guard, after reaching a buyout with the Houston Rockets, Charania reported last week the franchise would have interest in Irving if he was to be moved.
Charania also detailed what it would take for L.A. to acquire Irving:
"For the Clippers, the likely path to get Irving requires him to opt in, because they are significantly over both the luxury-tax line and the hard cap for 2022-23. To satisfy salary matching, the Clippers would need to send out between $29.3 million and $45.8 million to the Nets and/or a third team if Irving is the only salary headed their way.
"The Clippers’ scenario is less complicated than the Lakers, as the Clippers have a series of players making $11 million to $17 million to work with. For example, two or three of Norman Powell, Marcus Morris, Luke Kennard and Reggie Jackson going out satisfies the CBA’s trade rules, and they also have a collection of young players like Terance Mann or Brandon Boston who could help sweeten the deal."
It's also worth mentioning that Clippers star Kawhi Leonard tried to recruit Irving to the Clippers before the team acquired Paul George from the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2019, per ESPN's Zach Lowe.
That said, it seems like the Clippers won't be ruled out for Irving entirely.
As for the Mavericks, they also have a starting point guard in Luka Doncic. However, the franchise is reportedly going to lose a significant contributor in Jalen Brunson, who is expected to sign a four-year, $110 million deal with the New York Knicks, per ESPN.
Acquiring Irving would allow Dallas to make up for the loss of Brunson's production and then some, though his fit with the Mavericks is a little unclear, especially with Doncic in control at the point.
In addition to the Clippers and Mavericks, the Los Angeles Lakers have been the most linked to Irving over the last week. ESPN's Steven A. Smith reported Thursday that Irving wants to team up with LeBron James again in Los Angeles after the two won a title together with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016.
"He’s been telling people he wants to be in L.A., he’s been telling people he wants to wear the same uniform that Kobe Bryant once wore," Smith said, per NJ.com's Adam Zagoria.