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Durant requests Nets trade, Patty stays at Brooklyn, Ingles links with Bucks

Kevin Durant dropped a bombshell on the NBA a couple of hours before the start of free agency by requesting a trade from Brooklyn.

The superstar forward is likely to yield one of the biggest, if not the biggest, trade packages of all time for the Nets, whose experiment of bringing in Durant, Kyrie Irving and James Harden has blown up in spectacular fashion.

Durant has reportedly requested Phoenix and Miami as his preferred trade destinations.

The 34-year-old is under contract for four more seasons worth $US193 million, so any franchise which can negotiate a deal with the Nets can do so with the knowledge that they don’t have to worry about him leaving early.

The Suns could put together a package around a sign-and-trade for former No.1 pick Deandre Ayton with the disgruntled centre keen to leave Phoenix while Miami could offer young shooters Tyler Herro and Duncan Robinson.

Brooklyn are reportedly already exploring trade deals with other franchises and whichever team lands Durant will need to stump up at least two or three blue-chip prospects and multiple unprotected first-round picks and swaps like the Lakers did when they dealt for Anthony Davis from New Orleans three years ago, widely considered the biggest haul in NBA history.

CLEVELAND, OH - NOVEMBER 22: Patty Mills #8 and Kevin Durant #7 of the Brooklyn Nets react after a made shot against the Cleveland Cavaliers during the second half at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on November 22, 2021 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Nets defeated the Cavaliers 117-112. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images)

Patty Mills and Kevin Durant. (Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images)

Irving opted into the final year of his contract earlier this week after being unable to negotiate a long-term extension with Brooklyn and the departure of his close friend is likely to lead to the All-Star guard also leaving the Nets.

It’s clear Durant was peeved at Nets management’s negotiations with Irving with ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reporting KD had no contact with the Nets after his teammates opted into his deal and there was “a sense of inevitability” that he would demand a trade.

Brooklyn had reportedly only found out about Irving opting in via the media.

Boomers guard Ben Simmons, who was traded to Brooklyn midway through last season but controversially failed to play a match for them due to a back injury, is set to be starting next season without either of his fellow All-Star teammates.

Australian veteran Patty Mills opted out of his $6.2 million player option with Brooklyn to become a free agent but will return to the franchise on an upraded $14.5m contract.

Another Boomers star, Joe Ingles, has inked a deal with Milwaukee Bucks with his wife Renae tweeting the good news.

Ingles is rehabilitating his knee after tearing his ACL midway through last season with Utah. 

The veteran forward will be a more than handy addition for Milwaukee as they look to go back to the NBA Finals following their Eastern Conference semi-final exit at the hands of Boston which ended their championship defence.

“Sources very close to free agent @Joeingles7  can confirm that he has agreed to a one-year deal with the Milwaukee Bucks. CEO of the house, Renae Ingles, is thrilled for Joe and their family.  Joe himself, is said to be very bucking happy.”

Joe replied to his wife’s tweet with the eyes emoji and “breaking news”.

Also on the Australian front, former Boomers coach Brett Brown has sealed a deal to return to San Antonio as Gregg Popovich’s assistant. The former 76ers coach could succeed Popovich as Spurs head coach in the coming years when he eventually retires.

With the official start to free agency starting on Friday morning AEST, the announcements have been coming thick and fast.

  • Two-time MVP Nikola Jokic has signed a $264 million super-max deal which will be the biggest contract in NBA history.
  • Wizards star Bradley Beal has agreed to a five-year $251 million max deal with Washington.
  • Anfernee Simons is returning to Portland on a four-year $100m deal.
  • Mavericks guard Jalen Brunson is set to ink a five-year $100m-plus contract with the Knicks.
  • Suns shooter Devin Brooker is inking a $214m four-year extension with Phoenix.
  • Bobby Portis will remain in Milwaukee on a four-year $49m contract.
  • Jazz defensive specialist Royce O’Neale has been traded to Brooklyn for a 2023 first-round pick.
  • James Harden has opted out of his Philadelphia deal but is expected to re-sign on a multi-year deal.
  • Former Sydney Kings forward Jae’Sean Tate has hit the jackpot with a three-year $22m deal at Houston.

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