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Windhorst: 'The Vibe' Is Nets Are Prepared to Keep Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVJuly 13, 2022

Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images

"The vibe" around the Brooklyn Nets reportedly suggests the front office may be prepared to keep both Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving despite the offseason trade rumors.

ESPN's Brian Windhorst reported the update Wednesday on Get Up, saying the Nets have yet to field the type of offers they'd want to blow up their roster (30-second mark of video).

"The market for Durant has not been as lucrative as the Nets were hoping, and the market for Kyrie is very thin. It's essentially the Lakers, and the trade offer isn't great," Windhorst said.

Durant's business manager, Rich Kleiman, confirmed to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski in late June that the 12-time All-Star had requested a trade out of Brooklyn.

Any hope of a clean break and a rapid roster reconstruction for the Nets has faded over the past couple of weeks, though.

The asking price is a major factor in the sluggish talks. Shams Charania of Stadium of The Athletic reported last week on the Pat McAfee Show (via CBS Sports' Jasmyn Wimbish) that the Nets are seeking "All-Star-type players [and] a boatload of draft picks."

Between those demands and a limited number of potential suitors, it could prove difficult to move Durant over the summer, and there's no time pressure to change that because he's under contract through 2025-26 as part of a four-year, $194.2 million deal.

The question is whether Durant, Irving and Ben Simmons could form a successful core next season after a drama-filled 2021-22 campaign—which saw the team eliminated in the first round of the playoffs before Simmons could make his team debut—followed by this offseason's uncertainty.

On paper, that trio combined with a depth group that includes Joe Harris, who's also been mentioned in trade speculation, Royce O'Neale, Seth Curry and Cam Thomas, among others, has the talent to seriously contend in the Eastern Conference.

The Nets seem willing to take a chance with that route if the right trade offers don't come along, but there would be obvious risk the plan would blow up in their face, especially if Durant continues to push for an in-season trade, similar to James Harden last season.

All told, Brooklyn would be walking a tightrope, but it may not have a viable alternative if it wants instant-impact players in the deal as opposed to future assets.

It'd be making a bet that winning games would fix any background issues that have developed over the past couple of years.

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