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Phoenix Suns to pursue Kevin Durant if Nets star is made available

Kevin Durant’s future with the Brooklyn Nets is now firmly up in the air. Currently sidelined with a knee injury, the two-time NBA Finals MVP requested a trade last offseason. Said request came with Durant being unhappy about the direction of the organization.

Now that Kyrie Irving has been dealt to the Dallas Mavericks in a blockbuster ahead of the NBA trade deadline, it’s not yet known how Durant is going to react. Meanwhile, Brooklyn might just look to blow this thing up after Durant and Irving played in just 74 games together with the Nets.

If so, the Phoenix Suns are set to make a move for the future Hall of Famer. According to Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report, Phoenix is prepared to pursue Durant should he be made available ahead of Thursday’s NBA trade deadline.

We’re not going to pretend to be shocked on this front. First off, an argument could be made that 28 teams will have interest in Kevin Durant should Brooklyn make him available. Secondly, Phoenix was considered the favorite to land Irving before he was dealt to Dallas. Finally, the Suns had talks with Brooklyn surrounding Durant last offseason.

New Phoenix Suns owner Mat Ishbia has also made it a priority for his front office to be aggressive. That is to say, finding another star to team up with Devin Booker in the desert.

Related: Kevin Durant and NBA’s top-50 players of 2023

Analyzing a potential Kevin Durant trade to the Phoenix Suns

kevin durant trade, phoenix suns
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Phoenix’ presence in NBA trade rumors shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise. This team boasts the assets to pull off a blockbuster trade. And in reality, it is going to take a ton of assets to pry Durant from Brooklyn should he be made available.

Any deal would start with star forward Mikal Bridges heading to Phoenix. He’s among the best two-way wings in the NBA, is only 26 years old and still offers untapped potential. Bridges is a player the Nets could build around moving forward.

Fellow forward Cameron Johnson would also head to the Nets in any deal involving Durant. While this would be a huge cost to start off with, the future first ballot Hall of Famer continues to prove his worth.

  • Kevin Durant stats (2022-23): 29.7 PPG, 6.7 RPG, 5.3 APG, 56% shooting, 38% 3-point

Teaming Durant up with Booker would immediately make Phoenix the top contender out west. That’s why the cost of pulling off a trade would be huge.

In addition to Johnson and Bridges, the Suns would have to send at least three future first-round picks to Brooklyn. As for Deandre Ayton’s potential inclusion, Brooklyn doesn’t really have a need with Nic Claxton looking very much the part at center. Instead, Jae Crowder and Dario Saric would head to Brooklyn as salary fillers with Crowder himself likely shipped to another team for more assets.