Kevin Durant requests a trade from the Brooklyn Nets
Kevin Durant may be taking his quest for more titles elsewhere.
Durant has requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets, according to a person with direct knowledge of the decision that undoubtedly will have teams scrambling to put together enormous offers for the perennial All-Star.
The Nets have been working with Durant to find a trade partner, and he has multiple teams on his preferred list, according to the person who spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity Thursday because neither the player nor Brooklyn revealed any details publicly.
ESPN first reported Durant’s trade request, citing Phoenix and Miami as two of his preferred destinations. The bombshell came just hours before the NBA’s free-agent period for this summer was set to begin at 3 p.m. PDT.
Durant has played 14 seasons, not including one year when he sat out while recovering from a torn Achilles. He has averaged 27.2 points in his career — over that span, only LeBron James, at 27.3 points per game, has averaged more.
And even at his age — Durant will turn 34 on Sept. 29, around the time training camps open this fall — he is still one of the best players in the game, his 6-foot-11-frame making his jump shot almost unstoppable by any defender.
The Lakers enter free agency with the taxpayer midlevel exception and minimum contracts to fill out their roster after Russell Westbrook opts in.
Durant is a 12-time All-Star, four-time scoring champion, three-time Olympic gold medalist and two-time NBA champion — those rings coming with Golden State, the team he was with before joining Brooklyn. He has four years and nearly $200 million remaining on his contract, which means that it may take a haul of players, draft picks or possibly both for a team to acquire him.
Durant spent three seasons with Brooklyn, not playing in the first of those years while he recovered from the Achilles injury. He averaged 29.9 points in 55 games last season after leading the U.S. to Olympic gold at the Tokyo Games last summer.
Unless he changes his mind and stays, his departure will be a huge blow to the Nets. At this time last year, Brooklyn was banking on contending for a championship with a core led by Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving.
In other news Thursday:
—Center Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets agreed Thursday to a $264 supermax extension, according to a person with direct knowledge of the negotiations who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because neither the player nor team announced the agreement.
—Guard Bradley Beal and the Washington Wizards have agreed on a five-year contract that could pay him as much as $251 million. Beal’s announcement was made by his agent, Mark Bartelstein of Priority Sports.
—P.J. Tucker is reuniting with Philadelphia general manager Daryl Morey and — assuming he re-signs, as planned — James Harden as well. Tucker agreed Thursday to a three-year deal with the 76ers for $33 million. Morey, Tucker and Harden were together with the Houston Rockets.
—Bobby Portis (four years, $49 million) is returning to Milwaukee, and the Bucks are adding veteran guard Joe Ingles as well.
—Anfernee Simons, who had a breakout season for the injury-plagued Portland Trail Blazers last year,agreed to a four-year, $100 million contract to remain with the club.
—Lu Dort, undrafted three years ago and someone who made about $4 million combined in his three seasons with Oklahoma City, will stay with the Thunder for the next five years on a deal worth nearly $88 million.
—Miami will retain Victor Oladipo on a one-year, $11 million deal and Dewayne Dedmon on a two-year deal for about $9 million, though the second year has conditional protections.
—Toronto is keeping forwards Chris Boucher (three years, $36 million) and Thaddeus Young (two years, $16 million).
—Detroit moved quickly to lock up restricted free agent Marvin Bagley III, agreeing to keep him with a three-year, $37-million deal.
When free agency opens at 3 p.m. PDT Thursday, the Clippers will have most of their roster put together after signing Ivica Zubac and John Wall.
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