In comments in yet another ESPN Draft Preview, Adrian Wojnarowski predicted there will be a lot of trades on Draft Night ... and noted that while the Nets and Knicks are still in the picture for Kevin Durant, the injured superstar is doing “a lot of soul-searching” that could lead to a return to Golden State.
“I think there will be an extraordinary number of trades tomorrow night,” he said, noting that Boston and Atlanta, both with three picks don’t to use them all and teams from the second round— presumably including the Nets who have top pick in the second round— will be trying to move up into the last seven picks of the first round.
On Durant, Woj suggested the severity of his injury has given him some pause in thinking about free agency.
“I’m told KD is doing a lot of soul searching right now,” Woj said. “You know. stepping back from the injury. processing all of this. KD can go back to Golden State on a five year, $200 million plus deal that gives him absolute assurance that coming off his Achilles injury, that maybe gives him something else to think about, staying in Golden State, but Brooklyn and the Knicks are very much in the fight to get Kevin Durant.”
As for Kawhi Leonard, Woj said that despite the championship in Toronto, the Clippers remain in the lead for the Finals MVP’s services.
“The Raptors closed the gap, but I think they still have a ways to go to beat out the Clippers.”
Meanwhile, Frank Isola of The Athletic reports that Durant remains in New York, where he underwent surgery last week at the Hospital for Special Surgery.
As of Wednesday, Durant was still in town preparing for free agency on July 1st, with no shortage of teams lining up to sign a player who will likely be sidelined until the 2020-21 season. It’s a testament to Durant’s greatness and a sign of how desperate so many teams – the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets among them – are to add a franchise player who is recovering from a major injury.
- As draft arrives, Durant and Irving’s decisions loom the over NBA landscape in New York - Frank Isola - The Athletic New York