Here's where Kevin Durant, Deandre Ayton, Phoenix Suns and Brooklyn Nets chatter stands right now

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Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul, left, and Suns center Deandre Ayton, right, watch as Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) dunks unopposed the third quarter of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, April 25, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul, left, and Suns center Deandre Ayton, right, watch as Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) dunks unopposed the third quarter of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, April 25, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

Nets All-Star Kevin Durant's trade request at the start of free agency June 30 sounded simple enough.

One of the NBA's greatest players ever, who made the league's 75th anniversary team, no longer wants to play for Brooklyn.

Having Phoenix atop his short list of desired destinations sounded logical, too.

Durant has Olympic gold connections with Suns head coach Monty Williams and All-Star guards Chris Paul and Devin Booker. The three-time Olympic champion played with Paul on the 2012 team and Booker last year in Tokyo.

In between that, Williams was an assistant on the 2016 USA squad with which Durant won the second of his three Olympic gold medals.

Devin Booker and Kevin Durant pose for a photo during the medal ceremony for basketball game at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Saturday, Aug. 7, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.
Devin Booker and Kevin Durant pose for a photo during the medal ceremony for basketball game at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Saturday, Aug. 7, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.

Everything else is complicated to the point it may take longer than anticipated for an eventual outcome that could go in a number of directions.

There's the sign-and-trade component with restricted free agent Deandre Ayton, with Indiana being that potential third team because they have the salary cap space to handle a max deal for the Suns center.

Phoenix could get Pacers big Myles Turner, a shot blocker who can stretch the floor, in return.

The Suns re-signed Bismack Biyombo, acquired Jock Landale in a trade with Atlanta for cash considerations, but the 26-year-old Turner is a more ideal starter than those two.

Jan 14, 2022; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (22) catches the ball while Indiana Pacers center Myles Turner (33) defends  in the first quarter at Gainbridge Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 14, 2022; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (22) catches the ball while Indiana Pacers center Myles Turner (33) defends in the first quarter at Gainbridge Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

There are the draft picks Brooklyn should demand after Utah received 2023, 2025, 2027 and 2029 first round picks and a 2026 first round pick swap from Minnesota as part of a colossal deal for All-Star center Rudy Gobert.

If the Jazz can get that draft haul for Gobert, the Nets should probably receive at least four first round picks for Durant, plus an All-Star caliber talent and another player.

However, Bleacher Report's Jake Fischer reported one unnamed general manager told B/R that Ayton, Mikal Bridges, Cam Johnson and "five picks still isn't enough" for Durant.

Ayton, Bridges and Johnson are three fourths of the Suns' building nucleus along with Booker, who has agreed to a four-year, $224-million supermax deal.

If Phoenix loses Ayton, Bridges and Johnson in whatever form that comes and lands Durant, Booker will be the only player left on the team it actually drafted (13th overall out of Kentucky in 2015).

There's Toronto being a team ESPN's Bobby Marks said is the "leader in the clubhouse" for Durant.

The Raptors have an All-Star in Pascal Siakam, who can be part of a trade even with Ben Simmons on Brooklyn's roster, Rookie of the Year Scottie Barnes and multiple first-round picks.

Miami is also atop Durant's trade list with Phoenix.

The Heat and Suns were the No. 1 seeds in their respective conferences in the 2022 playoffs, but neither reached the finals. They'd remain championship contenders with Durant, but would lose key players who contributed to their success last season.

If Durant ends up anywhere but Phoenix, it would go down as an even bigger disappointment than losing out on LaMarcus Aldridge back in 2015.

The Nets aren't in a rush to make a deal because they have Durant on a four-year, $198-million maximum extension without a player option.

Durant, 33, will be an unrestricted free agent after the 2025-26 season.

So who knows, Durant may remain in Brooklyn if the deals don't satisfy everyone involved.

That seems highly unlikely right now, but things can change over time.

Then there's an idea Ayton may wind up back in Phoenix after all if the Durant deal falls through or the Suns somehow acquire Durant without Ayton in a multi-team deal.

The Suns didn't offer Ayton a rookie max extension before the 2021-22 season, but Suns General Manager James Jones repeatedly said before Durant's trade request shook the league Ayton is major part of their team and he wants to keep it together.

Could the Suns and Ayton agree on a shorter deal with Ayton that pays close to max money per year?

Oct 27, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) and center Deandre Ayton (22) against the Sacramento Kings at Footprint Center.
Oct 27, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) and center Deandre Ayton (22) against the Sacramento Kings at Footprint Center.

Then there's an underlying layer that the NBA still hasn't announced the results of the Robert Sarver investigation.

The NBA launched an investigation in reaction to an ESPN report last November of allegations of racism and misogyny against Sarver, claiming he created a "toxic" work environment within the Suns' organization.

The league has yet to announce the results of the investigation, which NBA commissioner Adam Silver told Yahoo! Sports last month was "getting close to the end."

Jones has said the Suns will conduct business as usual regardless of what the results are, but one would think the franchise would be on its best behavior after the results of the investigation to avoid any penalties.

Have opinion about current state of the Suns? Reach Suns Insider Duane Rankin at dmrankin@gannett.com or contact him at 480-787-1240. Follow him on Twitter at @DuaneRankin.

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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Here's where Durant, Ayton, Suns and Nets chatter stands right now