The Phoenix Suns were linked with Kevin Durant in the summer. When Kyrie Irving was dealt to the Brooklyn Nets, murmurs appeared that the former MVP could be on the move before the deadline, but this deal still came out the blue. Let’s dive into some quickfire Kevin Durant trade analysis.
Kevin Durant trade analysis
Mikal Bridges, Cam Johnson and Jae Crowder are heading to Brooklyn. Phoenix is also sending four first-round picks and a 2028 pick swap for Durant and T.J. Warren. This is one of the biggest NBA trades of all-time, a league-altering swap which changes the balance of power in both conferences.
The knock-on is seismic. Phoenix has Durant, Devin Booker, Chris Paul and Deandre Ayton, becoming favorites in the Western Conference. Brooklyn has embraced a deep rebuild without its own draft capital, but has a lot of rotation-quality talent. Do the Nets look to reroute Crowder? What does this mean for other pieces on the roster?
For the Houston Rockets, this confirms that the James Harden trade was a homerun to end all homeruns. Houston owns Brooklyn’s draft for the majority of the decade. The Nets are now without Durant, Irving and Harden.
The Suns retained Ayton, which has to go down as a surprise given his rocky relationship with the franchise. Phoenix instead had to let go of two excellent, two-way wings in Bridges and Johnson. It seems odd to say a team is thin on the wing when they’ve trade for Durant, but one wonders if there is another move to come from the Suns. In Booker and Durant, Phoenix arguably has the best two-man pairing in the NBA, though, and elevates itself from also-ran to sure-fire contender.
On the other side, the Nets’ superteam becomes one of the NBA’s greatest failed projects. The recouped draft capital from the Suns could have value down the line as Paul and Durant age, but it is unclear where they go from here. It is, however, an almighty haul, giving the front office assets to work with in the coming hours, months, and years.
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