Nets may not want Russell Westbrook in potential Kyrie Irving deal

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After some initial optimism that the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets would soon complete a trade that would land Kyrie Irving in Southern California for Russell Westbrook, both teams are seemingly stuck.

There have been many reports that have mentioned multiple potential sticking points that may be getting in the way of a potential deal.

One potential issue could be that the Nets simply do not want to take back Russell Westbrook under any circumstances.

Although he has put up incredible numbers in recent years, his stock has fallen precipitously in a short amount of time, especially since the Lakers acquired him last summer.

Via Lakers Daily:

“According to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report, people around the league are dubious that the Lakers can pull off a direct swap with the Nets for Irving.

“‘The Lakers are the one team with an obvious desire to poach Irving from Brooklyn, but there is plenty of skepticism around the NBA that L.A. can acquire Irving in a direct two-team swap with the Nets,’ Fischer wrote. ‘Brooklyn’s goal of contending already disqualifies a theoretical package of Russell Westbrook and two first-round picks from satisfying the Nets’ wishes for any Irving or [Kevin] Durant return. ‘”

As everyone knows, Kevin Durant, Brooklyn’s other big star, wants out, but the team doesn’t seem to be in any rush at the moment to trade him.

Rumor has it that a potential Durant trade could involve more than two teams and possibly bring the Nets Donovan Mitchell, a three-time All-Star who often raises his game and puts up big scoring numbers in the playoffs.

If the Nets were to do such a deal and pair him with Ben Simmons, they would, at worst, be a playoff team, and they would possibly consider themselves contenders.

In that case, Westbrook wouldn’t seem to fit in with their plans for next season, and a third team would be needed to help the Lakers land their big fish.

Who could that third team be?

Adrian Wojnarowski mentioned on ESPN that the San Antonio Spurs could come in and help L.A. facilitate an Irving trade, although it would require the team to incentivize the Spurs, which would mean giving up draft compensation.

The Lakers have reportedly been reluctant to give up draft picks in any Westbrook trade. However, it is always possible that a trade involving additional teams could bring back additional players that would help soften the blow and even address roster issues.

With Summer League taking place in Las Vegas this week, Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka and Nets executive Sean Marks will have the opportunity to talk face-to-face, if they wish, and make progress on a potential trade.

But it’s also possible that this will drag on for a long time, and it’s also possible the Nets may end up not trading Irving before the new season starts.

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