The Nets appear to have “dipped their toe” into the trade market for Nicolas Claxton, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst stated on his latest Hoop Collective podcast, adding that he has heard about Claxton’s possible availability from two different teams (hat tip to RealGM). While Brooklyn may not be actively looking to move the young center, the team is at least “feeling out” the market, Windhorst says.
This isn’t the first time we’ve heard about the Nets considering the possibility of a Claxton trade. Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report said last month that Brooklyn “quietly gauged” the 22-year-old’s value at the 2021 draft. Fischer also reported that some rival executives believed the Nets would make Claxton available ahead of this season’s trade deadline.
Claxton will be eligible for restricted free agency this summer, and the Nets – already far above the luxury tax line – may be hesitant about giving him a sizeable raise. Additionally, rookie big man Day’Ron Sharpe has emerged recently as a viable rotation player who could claim some of Claxton’s minutes.
Still, Mark Deeks of Heavy.com isn’t convinced that trading Claxton would be the right call for the Nets, arguing that it would be difficult for the club to recoup enough value to make it worthwhile in both the short- and long-term.
Here’s more from around the Atlantic:
- Sixers star Ben Simmons is open to the possibility of sitting out for the entire 2021/22 season if the team can’t find a trade it likes by next month’s deadline, ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne said on Monday’s episode of NBA Today (video link). There have been reports that Philadelphia’s preference would be to get Simmons back on the court this season before potentially trading him in the offseason, but the idea of him playing for the club again has always seemed like a long shot.
- Charlie Brown Jr.‘s new two-way contract with the Sixers, signed last Tuesday, is a two-year deal covering the 2022/23 season in addition to the rest of ’21/22, Hoops Rumors has learned. That doesn’t mean Brown will definitely remain in Philadelphia through next season, but it ensures he’ll receive at least a $50K partial guarantee for ’22/23.
- Raptors center Khem Birch, who suffered a nasal fracture on Friday, underwent surgery to repair his broken nose over the weekend, tweets Josh Lewenberg of TSN.ca. Head coach Nick Nurse expects Birch to be out for about 10-to-14 days, Lewenberg adds.