Kevin Durant has requested a trade from the Brooklyn Nets, and his circumstances are somewhat unique. The trade market for superstars tends to be fairly small. They often use their status and contracts to exert an enormous amount of control over their destinations, and most of the time, they've settled on one or two preferred homes before negotiations even begin. A true bidding war through the entire NBA for a single star is exceedingly rarer. Even rarer is the sort of star who could genuinely fit onto any team.

But that's what Durant is. On the court, he was malleable enough to join a 73-win team without missing a beat. Need him to run your offense for lengthy stretches? He can do that. Want him to be your late-game isolation killer? Right up his alley as well. If you just want him to run around screens and take 3s? You bet he can do that. Realistically, he's going to be doing a combination of the three, scaling up or down in each area depending on who he's playing with. If you can't fit Kevin Durant into your offense, it's your fault, not his. 

Players like that just don't frequently become available. Durant himself has hit the market just twice in his career: once joining that 73-win Golden State Warriors team and eventually leaving it for the Brooklyn Nets. Both were completely his decision. That might not be the case this time around. Durant signed a four-year, $192 million extension last offseason. He's under contract through the 2025-26 season, when he will be 37. While Durant could certainly wield some influence in a new home should the need arise, the only true leverage he holds is the threat of retirement. Almost anybody could try to trade for him.

So let's take a look at his market through that lens. If all 29 non-Nets teams are theoretically in the mix here, let's go through them one by one and determine which team has the best chance to land Durant.


K.D. wouldn't be interested

29. Sacramento Kings

28. Indiana Pacers

27. Orlando Magic

26. San Antonio Spurs

25. Charlotte Hornets

I shouldn't need to explain to you why Kevin Durant would not want to play for the Kings. The Pacers are much more stable, but they're young, in a small market and not especially competitive. So are the Magic and Spurs, but they at least play in warm-weather cities without state income tax. Durant met with San Antonio in 2017 and the Spurs still have Gregg Popovich, so they edge out the Magic, but the Hornets top this group because of LaMelo Ball and Michael Jordan. Still, these are all teams Durant simply would not be interested in joining. They're the easiest cross-offs. Why trade for a player who would have no interest in playing for you?


It's not the right time

24. Detroit Pistons

23. Houston Rockets

22. Minnesota Timberwolves

Durant probably isn't especially interested in playing for these teams either, but he's enough of a hoops junkie to at least respect the talent. Cade Cunningham, Anthony Edwards and Jalen Green are all on All-Star trajectories. One day, they'd likely be wonderful partners for Durant. That day just isn't today. He's 34. By the time they're ready to compete, his prime will likely be over. So Detroit and Houston can throw all of the picks they want at Brooklyn. The Wolves could even offer Karl-Anthony Towns. But the Pistons and Rockets just can't win on Durant's timetable. Minnesota probably could if it managed to keep Towns and Edwards, but at that point, what could it even offer Brooklyn? The Wolves' picks wouldn't be especially valuable with so much talent in tow, and their third-best trade chip is … D'Angelo Russell? These teams are positioned to contend a few years from now. No need to rock the boat for Durant now.


Don't have enough to trade

21. Washington Wizards

20. Utah Jazz

19. Atlanta Hawks

18. Chicago Bulls

17. Dallas Mavericks

16. Philadelphia 76ers

Durant has never been all that interested in returning to his hometown of Washington D.C. He didn't even grant the Wizards a meeting in 2016. Maybe Bradley Beal and the player he once dubbed a unicorn in Kristaps Porzingis could change that … but what do the Nets get out of that arrangement? Washington can't trade a first-round pick until 2027 and its young players aren't all that exciting. The Jazz are similarly encumbered from a draft perspective and have no youth to speak of. Maybe offering Donovan Mitchell could tempt Brooklyn, but why would Utah even bother? A Durant-Rudy Gobert team isn't winning the West even if Durant would play in Utah. The Hawks were much higher on this list originally, but after trading most of their draft capital for Dejounte Murray, they just don't have enough to offer unless the Nets really like De'Andre Hunter and Onyeka Okongwu.