According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Irving will exercise his $37 million player option, “bypassing a number of opt-in and trade possibilities to complete his four-year commitment to the Nets and Kevin Durant.”
However, the story might not be over yet. This might be the start of a really drawn-out, disorganized play. As Bobby Marks of ESPN pointed out, the Nets can still help arrange a deal for Irving. By choosing to participate, Irving becomes tradable to any of the 29 clubs, and the hard cap limitation is lifted. Irving may yet use trade to force his way out of Brooklyn.
In order to win a championship, the Nets intend to continue focusing on acquiring players like Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant. Now that Irving appears to be committed to Brooklyn at least for the upcoming season, they can focus on assembling the rest of their squad.
As Kyrie Irving decides to stay, take a look at the Nets’ roster composition
The first component of the jigsaw is Irving choosing to sign his contract. If the Nets learned anything from last season, it’s that the playoffs were an issue because of their lack of dependable depth. With multiple key rotation players (superstars) departing via trade or free agency, maintaining depth becomes even more difficult.
While Bruce Brown, LaMarcus Aldridge, Andre Drummond, and Goran Dragic are all unrestricted free agents this summer, veteran guard Patty Mills has a player option for $6 million. Nic Claxton, an enthusiastic big man who will be eligible for restricted free agency, is anticipated to attract interest from other teams.
The Nets have Brown’s Bird Rights, so they may match any contract offers made to Claxton and go over the salary cap to sign the versatile guard. The Nets hope to keep undrafted rookie David Duke Jr. along with Cam Thomas, Day’Ron Sharpe, and Kessler Edwards who are all under contract for the upcoming season.
Who are under the Nets’ free agency watch and potential trades?
Deandre Ayton of the Phoenix Suns has come to the attention of the Brooklyn Nets, despite the fact that they are not in a position to compete in the general free-agent market. The Nets are apparently willing to lose both Irving and Durant in order to prevent another drama-filled season, as ESPN’s Brian Windhorst revealed. Irving moving to Phoenix seems doubtful, but if Irving left town, Durant might make a move on him.
Given their unwillingness to give Ayton a max contract to keep him alongside Chris Paul and Devin Booker in that scenario, the Suns might emerge as an intriguing possibility. Ayton’s odds of joining the Nets, who were the second-favorite team for him to join after the Suns, were reduced by a late surge in betting activity.
In Phoenix’s opinion, putting together a deal involving Ayton and some mix of Mikal Bridges/Cam Johnson and draught assets could be sufficient to tempt the Nets if it comes down to it. However, a number of bizarre events would have to take place for something like this to happen.
The New Outlook of Nets
Brooklyn’s drama seems far from ended, but if Irving is committed to playing for the Nets next season, they will continue to have one of the league’s best teams. They’ll undoubtedly be among the top betting favorites in the league.
They simply haven’t got an opportunity to share a floor together with the rest of the world. Ben Simmons is the largest question mark because he underwent back surgery in May and could make the biggest difference in their success in 2022–2023.
Despite the fact that Simmons hasn’t participated in a basketball game since June 2021, the Nets have a championship-caliber core in Durant, Irving, and Simmons. Many of the concerns about their roster will disappear right away if Simmons can play at an All-Star level for his new team.