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#pounditSunday, January 29, 2023

Interesting NBA rule could potentially affect Kevin Durant trade landscape

Kevin Durant dribbles

Oct 11, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) in action against the Philadelphia 76ers during the first quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

As rival teams rev up their engines to try to land Kevin Durant, there is one lesser-known rule that could affect the trade landscape for the former MVP.

Bobby Marks of ESPN reported on Thursday that the Brooklyn Nets will not be able to acquire star big Bam Adebayo from the Heat in a potential Durant trade. That is because Adebayo signed a Designated Rookie Extension with the Heat in 2020. NBA rules do not allow a team to roster two such players acquired via trade (the Nets already traded for Ben Simmons, another Designated Rookie Extension player, this past February).

Though Durant is reportedly interested in a trade to Miami, it is hard to see how the Heat can assemble a competitive trade package without including Adebayo. Tyler Herro would have to be the headliner of such a package with lesser-tier players like Kyle Lowry, Duncan Robinson, Gabe Vincent, and/or Max Strus plus draft compensation also going back to Brooklyn. That might not be enough to get the job done.

The Nets will likely try to send Durant to whatever team gives them the best possible return. But even if they do take Durant’s wishes into consideration, this other preferred landing spot of his seems more likely than the Heat.


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