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NBA News And Notes

The NBA trade deadline expired Thursday afternoon, but before it did, there was a flurry of moves around the league. While there were moves made by most all teams in the league, here are a handful of the biggest moves from the last few days.

Nets Move On From Superstars

One of the most noteworthy teams during the trade deadline was the Brooklyn Nets. Despite being squarely in contention in the Eastern Conference, they opted to move on from their two biggest superstars.

First, the Nets moved Kyrie Irving and Markieff Morris to the Dallas Mavericks in exchange for Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith, Jae Crowder, a first-round pick in 2029, and two second-round picks.

Crowder was subsequently traded to the Milwaukee Bucks in a separate three-team trade.

The headliner in this one is obviously Irving, who is averaging 27 points per game on 48% shooting. He is also averaging 5.1 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game. He now gets paired up with Luka Doncic to take on what has become a loaded Western Conference.

Dallas has the eighth-best odds of winning the NBA finals this year at +1800.

The Nets have also moved superstar Kevin Durant and forward T.J. Warren in a trade with the Phoenix Suns that nets them Mikal Bridges, Cam Johnson, and four first-round picks.

Durant is still on the sideline as he recovers from an MCL sprain in his right knee, but in 39 games, he has averaged 29.7 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 5.3 assists per game.

The acquisition of Durant, along with having Devin Booker, has propelled the Suns up to having the third-best odds of winning it all this year at +480.

As for the Nets, despite still being in playoff contention, they are now just +10000 to win the NBA finals.

Lakers Shed Westbrook From Roster

Despite averaging 15.9 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 7.5 assists in 52 games this season, Russell Westbrook’s tenure with the Los Angeles Lakers always seemed tumultuous at best. On Thursday, that tenure officially came to a close.

As part of a three-team trade, Westbrook was traded to the Utah Jazz. The Jazz also received Juan Toscano-Anderson, Damian Jones, and a 2027 first-round pick.

For the Lakers, they received Malik Beasly and Jarred Vanderbilt from the Jazz. The third team in the trade, the Minnesota Timberwolves, sent D’Angelo Russell to L.A. in the deal.

As for Minnesota, they received Mike Conley, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, and draft compensation in the deal.
For the Lakers, ridding Westbrook’s contract is huge, but the addition of Russell, Beasley, and Vanderbilt will help deepen the roster as well. In 54 games, Russell is averaging 17.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 6.2 assists.

As for Westbrook, the Jazz are expected to seek a buyout with Westbrook, making him a free agent. Teams like the Los Angeles Clippers, Miami Heat, and Chicago Bulls have already been linked to him if that were to happen.

Knicks Strengthen Rotation In Trade With Portland

On Wednesday, the New York Knicks became a little stronger as they acquired Josh Hart in a trade with the Portland Trail Blazers. In return, the Trail Blazers are getting Cam Reddish and a first-round pick.

In 51 games for Portland, Hart is averaging 9.5 points, 8.2 rebounds, and 3.9 assists per game.

While the East has become a bit less star-studded after the trade deadline, the Knicks still have just the ninth-best odds of winning the East at +8000.

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