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Nets extend qualifying offers to D’Angelo Russell ... and Theo Pinson

NBA: Playoffs-Brooklyn Nets at Philadelphia 76ers Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

As expected, the Nets have extended a qualifying order to D’Angelo Russell, preserving their free agency rights to their 23-year-old All-Star. Shams Charania broke the news in a tweet...

At the same time, the Nets extended a QO to rookie free agent Theo Pinson, as Michael Scotto tweeted...

As a result, DLo will now officially become a restricted free agent, meaning that as of 6 p.m. Sunday, he can sign, if he so chooses, an offer sheet with another team. Brooklyn would have 48 hours from midnight July 6, the end of the free agency moratorium, to match.

If Brooklyn hadn’t offered Russell the qualifying offer, Russell would have become an unrestricted free agent and free to sign with any team.

The Nets have until July 13 to renounce his rights or agree to terms on a contract extension with him. Brooklyn can rescind the qualifying offer at any point. The Nets are likely to do that only if and when they need to. With $46 million in cap space, the Nets could, for example. sign Kyrie Irving for $32.7 million, the max allowed under the CBA, then wait to make other moves while retaining their rights to Russell.

Similarly, the Nets needed to extend a QO to Pinson, who the Nets signed first to a two-way deal, then upgraded it to a standard NBA contract at season’s end. The same rules apply to Pinson’s free agency.