Nets Rumors: Bridges, Dinwiddie, Finney-Smith, O’Neale, D-Lo, Simmons

After getting off to 13-10 start this season, the Nets lost 17 of their next 21 games. Even after back-to-back wins on Saturday and Monday, they now own an underwhelming 19-27 record, which isn’t good enough for a play-in spot. However, Brooklyn’s front office isn’t any more willing to listen to inquiries on forward Mikal Bridges than it was earlier this season, reports Michael Scotto of HoopsHype.

The Rockets recently expressed interest in Bridges and conveyed a willingness to offer back several of the Nets’ own draft assets that they gave up for James Harden, league sources tell Scotto. However, talks didn’t move forward because Brooklyn wasn’t willing to entertain the idea of moving the 27-year-old.

Brian Lewis of The New York Post (subscription required) confirmed a few days ago that Bridges is still viewed as “essentially untouchable” and suggested that even if Houston was willing to return all of Brooklyn’s draft assets, the Nets wouldn’t consider it. The Rockets still control the Nets’ unprotected first-round picks in 2024 and 2026, along with the right to swap first-rounders with Brooklyn in 2025 and 2027.

Here’s more on the Nets:

  • Point guard Spencer Dinwiddie appears increasingly unlikely to remain in Brooklyn beyond this season, according to Scotto. That doesn’t necessarily mean Dinwiddie will be moved by next Thursday though, since the Nets could also try to do a sign-and-trade with him this offseason, like they did back in 2021 when he left Brooklyn for Washington.
  • Rival executives who have spoken to HoopsHype believe the Nets could potentially extract a first-round pick and a rotation player in exchange for Dorian Finney-Smith and multiple second-round picks for Royce O’Neale, says Scotto.
  • While Dejounte Murray is still the Lakers‘ top trade target, Los Angeles continues to have interest in a handful of Nets players, including Finney-Smith, O’Neale, and Dinwiddie, Shams Charania of The Athletic said during an appearance on FanDuel’s Run it Back (Twitter video link).
  • Brian Windhorst of ESPN (Insider link) identified Dinwiddie as the most likely Net to be traded by the deadline and noted that Lakers guard D’Angelo Russell has been “floated” as a possibility for Brooklyn. I imagine the Lakers would only be interested in a Dinwiddie/Russell swap if they could acquire a wing like Finney-Smith or O’Neale in the same deal by sending the Nets another asset or two.
  • Before making any deadline moves, the Nets are hoping to evaluate how their rotation looks with Ben Simmons back in the fold, Scotto observes. The former No. 1 overall pick was in high spirits after having a big game in his return on Monday, writes Brian Lewis of The New York Post. “It’s amazing because this is probably one of the best teams in terms of just friendships I’ve been a part of. Everyone gets along, we don’t have egos or anything like that on the team, and guys want to win and compete,” Simmons said. “So for me to be able to be in an environment like this is amazing. I get to come to work with a bunch of friends that want to get better and compete. So, I’m happy.”
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