Betting Market Reacts to Kevin Durant’s Trade Request: Odds on Next Team, Futures Shakeup

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Kevin Durant's trade request ripples through betting markets (Photo by Melissa Tamez/Icon Sportswire)

The drama surrounding the Brooklyn Nets took a sharp turn Thursday evening in the wake of Kevin Durant’s trade request. Sportsbooks quickly responded with adjusted NBA Finals odds and prices on Durant’s next team.

The Nets are in a state of upheaval, and this type of chaos can often reveal wagering opportunities. While there are simply too many possibilities on the table for most bettors to feel comfortable firing in a futures wager, correctly predicting where Durant lands could result in a high-value bet.

The Suns and Heat are among KD’s preferred destinations, and while bookmakers have adjusted prices on those teams, odds will get even shorter on the team he ultimately ends up with.

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As for Brooklyn, the Nets have gone from favorite status to longshots, as it also seems unlikely Kyrie Irving will be back.

Odds to be Kevin Durant’s Next Team

Sportsbooks are posting odds on the teams most likely to acquire Durant via trade. There’s a lot to consider in terms of trade destinations that adds considerable complexity to this situation. Among these factors are trade compensation including players and draft picks salary cap, contracts, and contract structures.

We won’t break down every possibility. Nor will we speculate on trade compensation. After all, we may be looking at a series of multi-team trades when it’s all said and done.

Here are odds from two sportsbooks on the team to acquire Durant.

Kevin Durant's Next TeamPointsBet (Code BONUSDAY)DraftKings
Miami Heat+150+900
Phoenix Suns+125-200
Dallas Mavericks+400+1800
Chicago Bulls +700+1300
Portland Trail Blazer+1000+1000
Philadelphia 76ers+1200+1200
Boston Celtics+1400+1200
Atlanta Hawks +2000+5000
New Orleans Pelicans+2000+2500
Los Angeles Lakers+2500+3000
Golden State Warriors+3000+2500

Miami Heat

Miami Heat president Pat Riley is described as a “wizard” by some around the league, and rightfully so. Riley and owner Micky Arison have built the Heat into one of the game’s most impressive organizations. “Elite basketball culture” is a common phrase associated with the Heat. Adding Durant to a hard-nosed group featuring forwards Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo and head coach Erik Spoelstra forms a scary championship-caliber core.

Phoenix Suns

Some around the game opine that Phoenix is where Durant wants to land. Whether the Nets deliver on Durant’s wish in this spot remains to be seen, but the prospect of Durant pairing with All-NBA guard Devin Booker is appetizing. Booker averaged 26.8 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 4.8 assists in 2021-22, and brings NBA Finals experience to the equation. Most teams are motivated to acquire a player of Durant’s caliber, but the Suns might have a little extra drive on the Durant front as they’re expected to move on from young big man Deandre Ayton.

Dallas Mavericks

The Mavericks will look significantly different this season, but the show still revolves around Luka Doncic. Their acquisition of Christian Wood from the Houston Rockets was positively received, and one can only imagine the reaction if Durant lands in Dallas. NBA experts may suggest that a hypothetical roster that includes Doncic, Durant, and Wood still needs a point guard after Jalen Brunson signed a lucrative deal with the New York Knicks. Of course, the Mavs point guard in this scenario wouldn’t need to move mountains, but it warrants consideration nonetheless.

Philadelphia 76ers

Durant’s list of preferred destinations does not include the 76ers, per reports, but Joel Embiid doesn’t care. The second-team All-NBA big man has implored his bosses to do everything possible to put Durant in a Sixers uniform.

One can dream of a pairing of Durant and Embiid, and maybe even be convinced of a James Harden revival. But what is the likelihood the Nets trade Durant within their division? Yes, the teams agreed on a blockbuster trade during the 2021-22 season, but that was a swap of two disgruntled superstars. It’s tougher to stomach the idea of trading Durant to such an immediate rival.

Oddmakers Lengthen Nets’ Finals Prices, Suns & Heat Shorten

Oddsmakers didn’t waste time lengthening the Nets’ 2023 NBA Finals odds. Many NBA pundits had pegged the Nets as their pick to stand atop the league next summer. Those opinions warranted pause even before Durant’s trade request. They’re moot now, as the Nets will look drastically different in a matter of weeks.

Conversely, the Suns and Heat have risen up oddsboards upon the Durant news. Phoenix, after opening in the +800 to +950 range, has been tightened to around +600, putting them among the betting favorites. Miami has been adjusted from +1400 or +1500 to the +900 to +950 range.

In theory, Nets general manager Sean Marks could swap Durant, Irving, and Simmons for a quality collection of players. And perhaps there’s a scenario in which they remain Eastern Conference contenders. On the same coin, Nets owner Joe Tsai may ultimately decide to rebuild the entire roster if that’s what the best return package dictates.

The adjusted odds suggest the former scenario is most likely, but it doesn’t take an NBA savant to know how difficult it will be to replace the production that could be leaving the building.

Brooklyn Nets OddsJune 17July 1
FanDuel+700+3600
BetMGM (Code TODAY)+600+3000
DraftKings+600+2200

From our perspective, the degree of uncertainty surrounding the Nets makes it a bad time to wager on their Finals odds. It’s possible Marks pulls a rabbit out of his hat and acquires a collection of players that jells into a formidable contender. However, if they decide to hit the ‘reset’ button instead, any wager on the Nets would simply amount to a donation.

If bettors have insight on where Durant will land, though, value presents itself.

About the Author
Craig Williams

Craig Williams

Craig Williams is a Charlotte-based writer for Gaming Today, who has worked professionally in the gaming, fantasy sports, and sports business industries. He’s an avid fantasy football player, managing over 100 leagues across multiple formats. When he’s not pouring over Vegas odds and statistics, he’s indulging in soccer and enjoys anything from LigaMX to Champions League.

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