We’ve seen some moves this NBA season, but most included stars re-upping with their current teams, including Nikola Jokic (Denver), Ja Morant (Memphis), Devin Booker (Phoenix), and Karl-Anthony Towns (Minnesota). Notably, Rudy Gobert being traded to Minnesota was the only huge player movement so far.

There are three potential moves, however, that have everyone in the NBA holding their collective breath:

  • Kevin Durant has requested a trade out of Brooklyn.
  • Kyrie Irving is hoping to follow Durant out of Brooklyn.
  • Donovan Mitchell is heavily rumored to be traded to the New York Knicks.

After no trades were made on the Nets’ end, there was some thought that maybe cooler heads would prevail and the duo would remain and take another shot with a (presumably) healthy Ben Simmons this upcoming year.

That was blown up over the weekend with Durant flying to London to meet with Nets owner Joe Tsai, where Durant reportedly told Tsai that he still wanted to be traded, but he might consider staying if head coach Steve Nash and general manager Sean Marks were fired.

Tsai responded by publicly throwing his support to his front office and head coach.

Now, a report is out saying that the Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors, and Miami Heat are the frontrunners to land Durant.

On the Knicks’ end, they’ve had a largely quiet offseason, but adding Mitchell would certainly be a splash. Rumblings are coming out seemingly daily, but the deal hasn’t been made at this point.

NBA Futures Market in Flux Due to the Uncertainties

In the NBA futures market, Caesars and other sportsbooks have pushed Boston ahead of Golden State as 2022-23 NBA championship favorites now that the Celtics have been linked to Durant.

Boston Celtics+450
Golden State Warriors+550
Phoenix Suns+800
Los Angeles Clippers+800
Milwaukee Bucks+800
Los Angeles Lakers+950
Miami Heat+1400
Brooklyn Nets / Philadelphia 76ers+1800
Odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook

The Heat also rose slightly, but Brooklyn fell from around +1400 to +1800 with the recent news that doesn’t look favorable for Durant’s chances of suiting up at Barclays Center this season. What remains to be seen is if he plans on playing if he’s not dealt because the Nets say they will not settle for less than they feel Durant is worth in a potential trade.

Knicks and Nets Team Wins Are Also Tough Bets

DraftKings doesn’t even have a win total on the board for the Nets. You can bet on the Knicks’ win total at DraftKings, which stands at 39.5, so if you feel that they will make a deal for Mitchell before the start of the season, there’s some good value in taking the over since the Knicks would presumably be an above .500 team with the addition of the young Utah star.

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