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“Lakers get Kyrie.… Westbrook comes home a conquering hero, even though he didn’t really conquer anything” - Bill Simmons suggests a third team that could make a Kyrie Irving-Russell Westbrook trade possible

Kyrie Irving could be traded for Russell Westbrook. [Image Credit: Getty Images]
Kyrie Irving could be traded for Russell Westbrook. [Image Credit: Getty Images]

Kyrie Irving has been one of the best, yet also one of the most controversial players in the NBA. Due to these controversies, he showed up for only 29 games in the regular season, which hurt the team.

In the end, the Brooklyn Nets secured a playoff spot through the play-in bracket. However, they were quickly dismantled by the Boston Celtics in only four games.

A disappointing season is now over for the Nets, but they will have to figure out what to do in the future. Kyrie Irving has a player option on his contract and he will most likely exercise it.

The Nets, on the other hand, can offer him a maximum contract extension that would pay him $240 million over the next five years. If they keep Irving, they could trade him, and there is even a possibility of a trade for Russell Westbrook!

The Kyrie Irving for Russell Westbrook trade sounds intriguing

Bill Simmons and Ryen Russillo have recently talked about potential trades for Kyrie Irving. They mentioned several destinations for the All-Star guard, including Houston and San Antonio.

However, the most interesting idea was the trade that would send Irving to the LA Lakers for Russell Westbrook. Russillo immediately turned down the idea, saying that Kevin Durant would not be happy with it:

"Imagine telling Durant: 'Hey we're trading Kyrie and we know you don't want to, and by the way, you're playing with Westbrook again who you left because you didn't like playing with."

It is well known that Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant are close. One of the reasons why the Brooklyn Nets may give the point guard a maximum extension is his relationship with Durant.

Westbrook and Durant, on the other hand, were teammates in Oklahoma City. Even though they reached the 2012 NBA Finals together, their team ended up falling apart, with both Durant and Westbrook leaving.

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Bill Simmons, however, believes that the trade could work. Instead of it being a simple Irving-for-Westbrook swap, the trade would include a third team, the Oklahoma City Thunder. Simmons said:

"Sam Presti, OKC, former homer Russell Westbrook, taking the hometown hero home for a year. Get a couple of Lakers' firsts out of it. Lakers get Kyrie and the Nets just get a huge trade exception. That's it."

This sounds like a perfect trade scenario for all the teams involved. The LA Lakers would get a great point guard who has an outside shot. The Thunder would reunite with Westbrook, one of the greatest players in franchise history.

Furthermore, the Thunder would get more first-round picks, which is something they are known for.

RIP LeBron Fans, you all thought you were going to trade Russell Westbrook for Kyrie Irving 😭 https://t.co/USGjaqlXjZ

The Nets would have a massive trade exception they could use to trade for a player with a big contract. This may not seem ideal for Kevin Durant.

However, he would most likely prefer to win another championship instead of playing with Irving and getting eliminated early in the playoffs.

The most realistic scenario

While the three-team trade scenario Bill Simmons suggested sounds amazing, it is very unlikely to happen.

Kevin Durant wants Kyrie Irving to stay, and this is what will most likely happen. Irving is still a fantastic player and the two of them, alongside Ben Simmons and role players, could make big things happen.

Kyrie Irving has until June 29 to exercise his player option. The Nets also have the option to offer him a long-term extension that surpasses $240 million.

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Edited by Adam Dickson
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