As Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant’s trade inquiry nears a fourth week, the Boston Celtics have emerged among teams in talks over a potential deal, sources told ESPN.
The Celtics appear no closer to acquiring Durant than others in talks with the Nets, but Boston’s ability to include All-Star forward Jaylen Brown as a centerpiece in bids is helping make them formidable in the pursuit, sources said .
The Miami Heat, Phoenix Suns and Toronto Raptors were known for their varying interests in Durant, but the Celtics have also been in regular contact with the Nets, sources said.
There are no deals believed to be significant for Durant and no team has yet reached the significant threshold the Nets have set for trading one of the league’s most talented players, sources said. The Nets’ stance on a potential trade is largely unchanged: They want a massive return that could potentially include multiple unprotected first-round picks, pick swaps and influential players for Durant, sources said.
The Celtics consider All-NBA forward Jayson Tatum off-limits in any trade talks, but Boston is able to engineer a package for Durant that could include Brown and up to three unprotected first-round picks (2025, 2027 and 2029) – and two pick swaps (2024 and 2026). Brown, 25, has two years and $56 million left on his current contract.
Durant, a 12-time All-Star and two-time NBA Finals MVP, requested a trade on June 30 and has not withdrawn the request. At 33, Durant has four years and $198 million left on his contract, meaning Brooklyn can be patient as he waits for the kind of return he thinks will eventually materialize for one of the few players will that ever see the trading market reach its heyday.
The Celtics defeated the Nets 4-0 in an Eastern Conference first-round playoff series last season and built the core of their current team in part from draft compensation from a 2013 trade that saw Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce sent the Nets . Both Tatum and Brown were acquired based on Brooklyn picks shipped to Boston.
https://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/34291954/boston-celtics-teams-engage-talks-brooklyn-nets-possible-kevin-durant-deal-sources-say Boston Celtics among teams to engage in talks with Brooklyn Nets on possible Kevin Durant deal, sources say