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Kevin Durant-to-Warriors trade rumor losing luster

Golden State Warriors v Brooklyn Nets Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images

It seemed like a dream scenario that might, just might, satisfy everyone: Kevin Durant goes back to the World Champion Golden State Warriors in return for a bevy of young players and picks. Marc J. Spears of Andscape, part of ESPN, said two days ago that the Warriors were the ones to watch

“The one team, i am telling you guys, to keep an eye on is the Golden State Warriors. Golden State could have the best package for both parties. Jordan Poole, Jonathan Kuminga, All-Star Andrew Wiggins and former No. 2 pick James Wiseman,” said Spears.

Shams Charania also included Golden State in his list of top four destinations for KD.

But in the past 24 hours, the trade rumor has lost a lot of its luster, with Spears backing down a bit and Logan Murdock, who first said Durant had lost confidence in the front office, calling it “fairy dust.” And Steph Curry, whose sign-off would no doubt be needed on such a deal, was non-committal when asked about said rumor.

“A call is a call, and that’s what Bob Myers makes all the time. So, I think people shouldn’t put the cart in front of the horse, but there was a phone call.” said Spears in a bit of a backdown.

Murdock, who covers the Warriors for The Ringer, dismissed the idea altogether.

“You go to the Warriors, which is not happening. That’s just fairy dust. That’s all out in the wind. It was like a fun day to like here that, but it’s not happening,” Murdock said on ‘Real Ones with Raja + Logan,’ “If it were to happen, they would have to trade Wiggins, Poole, all their young guys…Kuminga, to go through something they’ve already kind of gone through. It’s kind of crazy to even have this discussion with Kevin Durant.”

Zach Lowe, on his Lowe Post podcast was equally doubtful, suggesting KD may not want to return to the Bay Area.

“Look at the Golden State one for Kevin Durant,” said Lowe. “To me, the initial obstacle for me was would Durant actually want to do that? After having his two titles discredited for joining a 73-win team that had just lost the Finals and the ‘bus driver’ discourse that has since enveloped him, would he really do that? What I’ve heard since for the Warriors is that yeah, they’ll look at it. Of course they’ll look at it. Any team will look at it.”

And as Brian Lewis noted, Wiggins can’t join the Nets in a trade. He, like Ben Simmons, has a designated rookie extension and while teams can have two such deals on the books, they can’t acquire the second in a trade. They have to move either Simmons or Wiggins in an expanded deal.

Moreover, Curry. when asked to comment on the rumor, was non-committal, even dismissive.

“The rumor mill and all that stuff is part of the nature of the NBA and league,” Curry told NBC Sports Bay Area. “You take it for what it is. You know how quickly things can change, but I like where we’re at.”

Of course, as numerous reporters have said, things have slowed down across the board. Will they heat up in Summer League. On Friday night, Adrian Wojnarowski said that the Nets do not feel a sense of urgency right now.

“Sean Marks, the Nets GM, has arrived in Las Vegas for Summer League and so have essentially all the other executives in the league and it gives teams a chance to talk in person,” noted Woj. “I think it gives you a chance to have a different kind of conversation that you can have on the phone.”

“Trades of this magnitude typically don’t come together quickly, especially,” he said, adding “I think in the case of the Nets or the other teams talking to the Nets that they have tremendous urgency or that they’re trying to move this along quickly to find a resolution, get a deal. They want to get a deal, they want to get the best possible deal that they can.

“But these things take on a life of their own and I think you’ll see more of the face-to-face conversations in the coming week to 10 days. But that doesn’t guarantee there’s going to be a KD trade in Summer League. This may move on and remember, the Nets have Kevin Durant under contract for four years and that is a pretty good reason not to rush into anything, maybe slow-play this over time.”

Summer League ends July 17.