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DRAFT WATCH: Nets replenish draft stock with Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving trades

NBA: Draft Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Nets gave up a lot of team’s past and present this week with the trades of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving but they also picked up a lot of its future, acquiring six first rounders and two seconds in the superstar trades. They also acquired the right to swap picks.

Overall, with their own picks and picks acquired in trades, both first and second rounders, they have 20 in the next seven drafts with three firsts in both the 2027 and 2029.

“The draft capital provides us additional avenues to continue to acquire talent,” said Sean Marks in a statement attached to the announcement of the Durant trade. “We remain steadfast in our commitment to building the team Brooklyn deserves.”

And it wasn’t just the draft picks that Nets acquired. They now have the largest trade exception in the NBA — a whopping $18.1 million — that’s nearly double the next biggest as well as another worth more than $6 million.

Although the Nets have three picks in 2023 — their own and the Suns firsts plus a low second — they currently don’t have a pick in the 2024 draft. Most of their picks, in fact, are bunched up between the 2027 and 2029 drafts. In that three-year span, they have 12 picks: six in the first round, six in the second and in 2029 alone, they have six picks, three in each round. The Nets can use the picks themselves or trade them to acquire players or better picks.


  • The short version of the story is this: the Nets have two first round picks, their own and the Suns unprotected from Durant trade. Here’s the longer version: they received two first rounders from Philly in the Harden trade, one this year and another, 1-8 protected, in 2027. That permitted the Nets to send one of them to the Jazz for Royce O’Neale in July. Under terms of that deal, Utah gets the worse of the Nets and 76ers picks. The Rockets also have the right to swap picks with the Nets, but at this point with a 20-win deficit between the two clubs and 26 games left, that’s virtually impossible. (This will be the second swap from the Harden trade that will be “extinguished.” The 2021 swap also didn’t happen.)
  • In the second round, Philadelphia will receive the most favorable of Atlanta’s second, Charlotte’s second and Brooklyn’s 2023. Atlanta will receive the second most favorable and Brooklyn will receive the least favorable of the three. Bottom line is that the pick is likely to be low. Currently, it’s No. 55.


  • The Nets first round pick goes to the Rockets. No protections. No questions.
  • In the second, Brooklyn’s also pick goes to Houston as part of the Sekou Doumbouya salary dump in 2021.


  • The Nets have their own first round pick and the Suns pick, unprotected, from the Durant trade. They must swap firsts with the Rockets if the Nets pick is better ... after the lottery. Again, if the Nets are still a top club, this swap could also be “extinguished.”
  • In the second round, the Nets may receive a pick from Indiana via Miami but will have to send their own pick to the Knicks. Both are complicated. Miami’s pick was sent to Indiana as part of a three-team trade in 2019 centered on T.J. Warren, then forwarded to the Nets as part of the Edmond Sumner salary dump last year. It’s protected 31-37, meaning Brooklyn only gets the pick if it’s No. 38 or lower. The Nets own pick was sent to the Hawks in the Jeremy Lin deal, then moved to the Knicks as part of their acquisition of Cam Reddish.


  • The Nets first round pick goes to the Rockets. No protections. No questions.
  • In the second round, the Nets control their own pick.


  • The Nets currently have three firsts: their own, the Suns unprotected, from the Durant trade, and the 76ers, protected 1-8, from the Harden trade. Their pick might have to be swapped with the Rockets and by 2027, who knows what the Nets roster and prospects will look like.
  • In the second round, the Nets pick will go to the Pistons as part of the DeAndre Jordan salary dump, but they have the Mavericks pick, unprotected, from the Irving trade.


  • The Nets control their own first rounder and have the right to swap their pick with the Suns first, part of the Durant trade.
  • In the second round, the Nets control their own second rounder and the Bucks, from the Crowder trade. if the 76ers first rounder in 2027 winds up in the top eight, the Nets will receive Philly’s second as compensation.


  • The Nets control their own first rounder as well as the Suns first unprotected from the Durant trade and the Mavericks first, unprotected, from the Irving trade. Another three-pick first round.
  • In the second round, the Nets control their own pick and the Mavericks pick, from the Irving trade, as well as the Bucks pick from the Crowder trade.


  • The Nets control their own first, also available to be traded starting on Draft Night 2023. Picks can only traded seven years in advance.
  • In the second round, the Nets control their own pick.

Data is drawn from both the RealGM and ProSportsTransactions draft pages.

Trade Exceptions

Brooklyn also now has controls big trade exceptions of $18.1 million, the biggest in the NBA by a long shot, from the Durant trade as expanded, and $6.1 million, from the Irving trade, both of which can be useful in facilitating other teams’ deals for additional assets aka more picks down the road. They also have a $1.8 million exception from dealing Markieff Morris and a $1.6 million exception from the Kessler Edwards deal. There may be another small one.

John Hollinger writes that the $18.1 million exception is “one of the rare exceptions large enough to do some real damage in the offseason.” The Nets no doubt plan to use it. They rolled all their deadline day deals into one four-team trade to generate it.


The Nets also now control five overseas stashes, having acquired the rights to 28-year-old David Michineau, a 6’4” French point guard who plays in Italy, from the Kings in the Kessler Edwards trade and re-acquired the rights to 26-year-old Juan Pablo Vaulet, a 6’7” Argentine small forward who play in Spain from the Pacers. The Nets had acquired Vaulet’s rights in 2015 from Charlotte, then traded them to Indiana last year.

The other Nets stashes are 7’0” Serbian center Nikola Milutinov who plays in Russia; 6’9” American power forward Aaron White who plays in Turkey, and 6’6” Serbian wing Nemanja Dangubic who plays in Greece. Of the three, only Milutinov is considered much of an NBA prospect but he makes more money playing for CSKA Moscow than he would as a veteran minimum player in the NBA. He will be a free agent this summer.

Cash Considerations

The Nets also sent unspecified cash considerations to the Kings in the Edwards trade and to the Pacers in what became a four-team trade centered on Durant to the Suns. Teams have a limit of $6 million that they can send to sweeten deals. The minimum that can be included is $110,000.