Basketball Wiretap

Steve Nash Downplays Possible Acrimony With Kevin Durant

Sep 28, 2022 1:34 PM

At one point during the offseason, Kevin Durant followed up his trade request from the Brooklyn Nets with a request that the franchise part ways with Steve Nash and Sean Marks.

Nash and Durant appear to be moving on in a positive direction.

"Knowing Kevin as long as I have, it didn't really bother me the way maybe everyone would think," Nash said. "That's a part of being competitors. I wasn't overly surprised and I wasn't even overly concerned. It was something that I thought we would address in time, and we did. And here we are and we're looking forward. It's something else that we can grow from as well."

Nash also didn't take Durant completely at face value.

"I never thought that was 100 percent. It's not black and white like that. There's a lot of factors, a lot of things behind the scenes." He did not specifically dispute any reporting about Durant, but said that "a lot of things that are reported are not 100 percent accurate, so you get fragmented bits of truth, you get things that are flat-out not true."

Nash and Durant previously worked together with the Golden State Warriors.

"Ever since we talked, it's been like nothing's changed," Nash said. "I have a long history with Kevin. Love the guy. Families have issues. We had a moment and it's behind us. That's what happens. It's a common situation in the league." 

James Herbert/CBS Sports

Tags: Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Cavaliers Interested In Trading For Jae Crowder

Sep 28, 2022 12:10 PM

The Cleveland Cavaliers have interest in trading for Jae Crowder, who has been put on the trade block by the Phoenix Suns.

The Cavaliers are in need of a 3-and-D wing that can guard small forwards and power forwards.

Four of Cleveland's starters are set in Darius Garland, Donovan Mitchell, Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen, but the small forward spot is a question mark.

Shams Charania previously reported that the Boston Celtics, Memphis Grizzlies, Dallas Mavericks and Miami Heat could also pursue Crowder.

Joe Vardon/The Athletic

Tags: Jae Crowder, Cleveland Cavaliers, Phoenix Suns, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Hawks Trade Maurice Harkless, 2nd Rounder To Thunder For Vit Krejci

Sep 27, 2022 5:46 PM

The Oklahoma City Thunder have agreed to trade Vit Krejci to the Atlanta Hawks for Maurice Harkless and a second round pick.

The Hawks will dip below the luxury tax with the trade.

Oklahoma City used the $4.9 million Disabled Player Exception from the Chet Holmgren injury to acquire Harkless. 

Shams Charania/The Athletic

Tags: Vit Krejci, Maurice Harkless, Atlanta Hawks, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Bucks Had Interest In Trading For Jerami Grant

Sep 27, 2022 4:07 PM

When Jerami Grant was available in potential trades this offseason, he was most strongly linked with the Portland Trail Blazers and was eventually traded there. But the Milwaukee Bucks were another team that expressed interest in trading for Grant when he was made available by the Detroit Pistons.

A similar, albeit lesser player in Jae Crowder is now available on the trade market by the Phoenix Suns and could fit the profile of what the Bucks are looking for. Milwaukee previously had P.J. Tucker play that role for them when they won their championship, but they elected not to re-sign him during the 2021 offseason.

"The Bucks will look though I bet," said Zach Lowe on his podcast about Milwaukee potentially having interest in Crowder. "The Bucks were sneakily kind of sniffing around Jerami Grant in Detroit before Portland swooped in. I think they like the idea of the switchable, switchable, switchable guys."

The Blazers acquired Grant from the Pistons in a package built around a 2025 first round pick via the Bucks and No. 36 in 2022. 

Zach Lowe/ESPN

Tags: Jerami Grant, Detroit Pistons, Milwaukee Bucks, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Lakers Were Willing To Trade 2027, 2029 First Round Picks For Kyrie Irving, Donovan Mitchell

Sep 27, 2022 1:15 PM

The Los Angeles Lakers have two attractive trade assets available to them in their first round picks in 2027 and 2029, which they have yet to use to upgrade their roster.

"I've been told that, listen, had the Lakers been able to acquire Kyrie Irving," said Dave McMenamin on Brian Windhorst's podcast. "Or the Lakers been able to acquire Donovan Mitchell, both those players, the Lakers were willing to able to move both those picks to acquire.

"The deals available to them, they didn't feel like they could get back a player that is such a difference maker like either of those two."

The Lakers have also been linked with trade scenarios involving Buddy Hield and Myles Turner of the Indiana Pacers. 

The Brooklyn Nets decided not to trade Irving, while the Utah Jazz received far more draft capital for Mitchell from the Cleveland Cavaliers than the Lakers could trade.

Dave McMenamin/ESPN

Tags: Donovan Mitchell, Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers, Los Angeles Lakers, Utah Jazz, Brooklyn Nets, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Rob Pelinka: We Will Do Everything We Can, Picks Included, To Help LeBron Get To The End

Sep 27, 2022 1:09 PM

Rob Pelinka confirmed that the Los Angeles Lakers are prepared to trade their first round picks in 2027 and 2029 if the right deal comes along.

LeBron James chose to extend with the Lakers in the offseason and Pelinka is prepared to fulfill their end of the bargain to maximize their odds of contending.

"Let me be abundantly clear: We have one of the great players in LeBron James to ever play the game, and he committed to us on a long-term contract, a three-year contract," Pelinka said. "So of course, we will do everything we can, picks included, to make deals to give us a chance to help LeBron get to the end. He committed to our organization. That's got to be a bilateral commitment, and it's there."

Dave McMenamin/ESPN

Tags: LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Pelicans Willing To Pay Luxury Tax 'When It's Time To Go All In'

Sep 27, 2022 1:06 PM

The New Orleans Pelicans are one of two teams to have never paid the luxury tax, but that could change based on the long-term contract commitments they have made to their core of Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram and CJ McCollum.

“When it’s time to really go all in on something, we will,” said David Griffin at media day.

The Pelicans are already over the cap and close the luxury tax for 23-24.

Owner Gayle Benson was in the front row observing Griffin's comments during his press conference.

Christian Clark/Times Picayune

Tags: New Orleans Pelicans, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: I Know What I Signed Up For With Thunder

Sep 27, 2022 12:39 PM

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander was asked to comment on his future with the Oklahoma City Thunder amid speculation that he may want to leave the franchise as they continue their rebuild.

"I know what I signed up for when I signed a five-year extension," said Gilgeous-Alexander to The Athletic. "And I don't think we're gonna be losing for much longer. So it's not like I signed up to lose or anything.

"I believe in this team. I think we're heading in the right direction."

Gilgeous-Alexander is entering Year 1 of five-year, $179 million extension with the Thunder.

Andrew Schlecht/The Athletic

Tags: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Suns Informed Jae Crowder He Likely Would Lose Starting Spot

Sep 27, 2022 12:05 PM

Jae Crowder asked the Phoenix Suns to be allowed to skip training camp as they continue their efforts to trade him.

The Suns informed Crowder over the summer that he may lose his starting job, which led to a trade request. Crowder is entering the final year of his current contract at the age of 32.

While the Suns have been active in trade discussions, they have yet to find a workable deal.

"Jae brought a number of intangibles to the team, I think all of our guys would speak in that way about him," Monty Williams said. "At the same time these things happen and you have to transition and move forward. I totally am behind James and how we are handling this."

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Tags: Jae Crowder, Phoenix Suns, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Kevin Durant Explains Why He Requested Trade From Nets

Sep 27, 2022 10:42 AM

Kevin Durant spoke publicly for the first time since his trade request from the Brooklyn Nets that was later rescinded after they essentially refused to accommodate him.

"There was a lot of uncertainty around our team last year," Durant said. "I committed to this organization for four years last summer with the idea we were gonna play with that group that we kind of went on that little run to the second round [in the 2020 playoffs]. I felt like another year of that, us being healthy -- we were building something towards the future.

"Then as the season went on, you seen what happened with our season, guys in and out of the lineup, injuries, just a lot of uncertainty, which built some doubt in my mind about the next four years in my career. I mean, I'm getting older and I want to be in a place that's stable and trying to build a championship culture. So I had some doubts about that. I voiced them to [owner] Joe [Tsai], and we moved forward from there."

Durant said he wasn't "disappointed" or surprised that he was still in Brooklyn.

"No," Durant said. "I know I'm that good that you're just not going to give me away. So that's one thing I did appreciate about Sean and Joe [they said]. 'You're too great for us to give you away.' Just that easy, that simple. So, I get that. I know who I am."

Durant said the Nets could have fought harder through adversity down the stretch of last season when he was out with an injury, noting that that's what championship-caliber teams do.

"When I went out with the injury, we lost [11] in a row," he said. "And I'm like we shouldn't be losing some of these games that we lost, regardless of who's on the floor. So I was more so worried about how we're approaching every day as a basketball team. And I felt like we could have fought through a lot of stuff that I felt held us back. Championship teams do that. You've seen Steph Curry and the Warriors, he was injured going into the playoffs. Their team still fought and won games. Luka [Doncic], he was hurt and their team still fought and won games.

"I felt like we had enough talent to do that. And that's what was the most about in my mind is that when adversity hit can we keep pushing through it? I've been on championship teams, I've been on teams that have been right at the brink of winning a championship, and they did those things. So I wanted to be a part of a group that did that.

"Winning and losing, I could take all that. I've been in the league for a long time. So it's not more so about just a result. It's how we get to that point. And I wasn't feeling how we were getting to that point. I didn't want it to affect the game so I waited to the offseason to tell people how I felt."

Nick Friedell/ESPN

Tags: Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Kyrie Irving: Vaccine Decision Cost Me Four-Year, $187M Extension With Nets

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Russell Westbrook: All-In On Whatever It Takes For Lakers To Win

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Kemba Walker Likely Will Not Join Pistons For Training Camp

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Jordan Nwora, Bucks Agree To Two-Year, $6.2M Deal

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Jae Crowder Won't Participate In Camp As Suns Seek Trade

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Juwan Morgan Signs With Clippers

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Dean Wade, Cavaliers Agree To Three-Year, $18.5M Extension

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Pelicans Sign John Butler, Zyland Cheatham; Waive Izaiah Brockington From Two-Way

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Thunder Hire Chip Engelland, Grant Gibbs As Assistant Coaches

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CJ McCollum, Pelicans Agree To Two-Year, $64M Extension

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Sam Presti Believes Shai Gilgeous-Alexander Speculation Due To Media Seeking 'Little More Content'

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Surplus Of Good Teams Could Create Unexpected Sellers On Trade Market

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Candice Dupree Hired By Spurs As Assistant Coach

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Andre Iguodala Agrees To Re-Sign With Warriors

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Joe Mazzulla Likely To Serve As Interim Head Coach Of Celtics

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