Brooklyn Nets star forward Kevin Durant, who has requested a trade, may reportedly be open to the possibility of landing with the Toronto Raptors.
Michael Grange of Sportsnet provided the report:
“There is also a sense—though it’s reading tea leaves at this stage, as teams can’t communicate directly with Durant, who remains under contract with the Nets—that the two-time champion and 11-time all-NBA force of nature is at least open to the possibility of playing in Toronto.”
All of those teams naturally have competition for Durant, a 12-time All-Star who just averaged 29.9 points, 7.4 rebounds and 6.4 assists per game for the Nets.
Wojnarowski also reported that the Nets are ultimately looking to do business with the team that will get them the best package of picks and assets and that “there’s no shortage of teams willing to unload assets for Durant.”
Toronto is apparently one of those teams, and Wojnarowski reported Friday on ESPN’s NBA Today free-agency special that the Raps are “lurking.”
“I think a team that’s lurking and is going to lurk in this is Toronto. They have all the kinds of pieces that you would want and their picks to do a deal for Kevin Durant and they have an organization, a leader in Masai Ujiri who , certainly you saw the chance he took on Kawhi Leonard with one year left on his deal. How far are the Raptors willing to go in an offer to Brooklyn?”
The Raptors are coming off a 48-34 season in which they finished fifth in the Eastern Conference. They have some intriguing potential players to offer, most notably Rookie of the Year Scottie Barnes. Toronto also has all of its future first-round draft picks as well.
As far as KD’s contract status goes, he has four years and $197.5 million remaining on his deal. He does not have a no-trade clause.
Ultimately, the signs are pointing to KD ending up in Phoenix, to the point where Sam Amick of The Athletic wrote that he appears “focused on Phoenix as the best place to continue his legendary career.” We’ll see if that comes to fruition, but for now, Durant’s next destination remains as the biggest NBA offseason storyline.