The Kevin Durant trade request has definitely caused a stir in the NBA world, and we might see a lot of rosters end up getting changed a lot due to that. He is a game-changing superstar, and it makes sense for all teams to try and acquire him.
One of Kevin Durant's favored destinations is the Phoenix Suns, but it will take a lot for them to get him due to their lack of perceived talent. Perhaps a blockbuster trade involving multiple teams can help them land Kevin Durant. This trade would feature Donovan Mitchell going to the Nets, and Deandre Ayton going to the Utah Jazz. Ben Simmons is a player that cannot be on the Nets at the same time as Donovan Mitchell due to CBA rules, so this scenario sends him to the Hawks, where he was previously linked.
Phoenix Suns Receive: Kevin Durant, 2028 First-Round Pick Swap With Jazz (Favoring Jazz), 2023 Second-Round Pick (ATL)
Brooklyn Nets Receive: Donovan Mitchell, John Collins, Mikal Bridges, Deandre Hunter, Onyeka Okongwu, 2025 First-Round Pick (PHO), 2027 First-Round Pick (PHO), 2029 First-Round Pick (PHO)
Utah Jazz Receive: Deandre Ayton, Cam Johnson, Day'Ron Sharpe, 2023 First-Round Pick (PHO), 2028 First-Round Pick Swap With Suns (Favoring Jazz), 2029 First-Round Pick (ATL)
Atlanta Hawks Receive: Ben Simmons, 2024 Second-Round Pick (PHO), 2025 Second-Round Pick (UTA)
The Phoenix Suns Get Their Superstar
Kevin Durant coming to the Phoenix Suns would allow him to team up with All-Stars Chris Paul and Devin Booker, immediately creating a new big three in the Western Conference. It makes sense that he would want to join a team that already has some talent, and his own superstar status could definitely push the Phoenix Suns over the top.
There is no doubt that there are cons to this trade for the Phoenix Suns. They would be giving up basically all of their picks in this scenario, as well as their depth. Most notably, they would be giving up Deandre Ayton, who would be sent out to get Donovan Mitchell, so he can be traded to the Utah Jazz.
However, sacrificing all that could potentially be worth it if the team ends up winning a championship. The Phoenix Suns got to the Finals in 2021 but ended up falling short and losing 4 straight games to Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks. Getting a superstar like Kevin Durant would prevent that from happening again, and even though the Western Conference will be tough next season, the Suns would have a good chance of getting back to the Finals and winning it all.
At the end of the day, this decision for the Phoenix Suns is simple. There is a superstar in Kevin Durant that is willing to join the team and make them a top-tier contender. It makes sense to move mountains to add him, and perhaps we'll see them end up doing so.
The Brooklyn Nets Get A Huge Haul In Return For Kevin Durant And Ben Simmons
It was recently reported that the Brooklyn Nets are interested in acquiring Donovan Mitchell. This package would give them the ability to have him as their next franchise star, while also adding other young players that can help them retool and stay competitive. The Brooklyn Nets notably have no incentive to tank, as their next few picks go to the Houston Rockets due to the James Harden trade.
The totality of this package features the Brooklyn Nets getting Donovan Mitchell, Mikal Bridges, John Collins, De'Andre Hunter, Onyeka Okongwu, and multiple first-round picks from the Phoenix Suns. Donovan Mitchell is a transcendent scorer, while John Collins and Mikal Bridges are both solid role players who can space the floor and play some defense. John Collins, in particular, has shown that he can thrive in a bigger role in the past, while Mikal Bridges is an efficient player offensively who has shown some ability to get his own shot. De'Andre Hunter is a good two-way player. Onyeka Okongwu and the first-round picks could be extremely valuable in the future.
There is no doubt that this trade would immensely benefit the Brooklyn Nets. Generally, teams never win when they have to trade a star, but getting an All-Star in return as well as some elite young role players with upside is the best return that you're going to get. The picks from the Phoenix Suns will be valuable down the line too when the team's not contending, and this sets the Nets up for both the now and the future.
The Utah Jazz Get A Package Headlined By Deandre Ayton
The Utah Jazz would be trading Donovan Mitchell in this scenario and getting a huge haul in return. They already traded away Rudy Gobert, and it makes sense for them to enter a rebuild. Donovan Mitchell seems like he'll be the next domino to fall, and this trade would move him out of Utah in return for a package featuring Deandre Ayton, Cam Johnson, Day'Ron Sharpe, and multiple first-round picks from the Atlanta Hawks and the Phoenix Suns. They would notably get the 2029 first-round pick from the Atlanta Hawks, and a 2028 swap with the Phoenix Suns, both of which could end up being extremely valuable.
As for the players in this deal, the biggest draw would be Deandre Ayton. He is an elite two-way big man, who has star potential if given more touches. He is athletic, has great skill set in the post, and is elite defensively. He has even shown traces of a jumper from the midrange area. Cam Johnson would be an elite 3 and D player: they could sign him to a contract when he becomes a restricted free agent and then trade him down the line depending on the stage of their rebuild. Day'Ron Sharpe would be a project big man for them.
Overall, this trade would get the Utah Jazz an elite center as their next franchise cornerstone, as well as draft compensation. They have a lot of picks from the Rudy Gobert trade, and it is quite possible that they will be back in contention soon if they are able to draft well and develop players.
The Atlanta Hawks Create A Big 3
This trade would be an opportunity for the Atlanta Hawks to add talent at a low price. Donovan Mitchell cannot be traded to the Brooklyn Nets due to CBA rules preventing a team from trading for two players on Designated Rookie max contract extensions. Perhaps the Atlanta Hawks could help facilitate the trade between the Utah Jazz, the Brooklyn Nets, and the Phoenix Suns by acquiring Ben Simmons.
The main pieces that the Atlanta Hawks would have to give up in this scenario are John Collins, De'Andre Hunter, Onyeka Okongwu, and a 2029 first-round pick. Obviously losing De'Andre Hunter would hurt as he is a solid two-way player, and the 2029 first-round pick could end up being very valuable down the line. Onyeka Okongwu is a promising center as well. However, John Collins has been frequently featured in trade rumors, and it is clear that the Hawks want to move on from the power forward. The chance to acquire a 3-time All-Star in Ben Simmons could be worth it, and the Hawks have made it clear that they want to compete as they have made a win-now move to put Dejounte Murray next to Trae Young.
There is no doubt that a big tree of Trae Young, Dejounte Murray, and Ben Simmons would be enough to compete in the Eastern Conference. Ben Simmons and Dejounte Murray would become a menacing tandem on the defensive end, making up for Trae Young's deficiencies on that side of the ball. Likewise, Dejounte Murray and Trae Young could do most of the offensive lifting, allowing Ben Simmons to take what the defense gives him and not force him to be a scorer. They would have to sign some shooters to ensure that there is enough spacing on the roster, but this seems like a good way for the Hawks to improve defensively and talent-wise.