Rich Hofmann: The first thing to know about this situat…

Rich Hofmann: The first thing to know about this situation has been that Morey’s asking price has been quite high from the start. There are plenty of people out there who would opine it has been too high, for a player of Simmons’ caliber who is also coming off a postseason that was quite damaging to his reputation as a player. The main piece of leverage that Morey has in this situation is Simmons’ contract, which has four years remaining on it. If Simmons is feeling any sort of disrespect — and in fairness to him, the team did attempt to trade him for James Harden last season, the type of trade scenario that could arise again — Morey is holding onto him because he believes keeping Simmons is better than sub-superstar returns.
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July 4, 2022 | 5:27 am EDT Update

Lakers not aggressive in pursuit of Kyrie Irving

“The Lakers have yet, I’m told, to be aggressive in trying to put a deal together to get [Kyrie] from Brooklyn. That may come, that may evolve with time. But so far right now, there’s no traction really on deals with either Irving or Durant.” 🗣️ @wojespn

As one insider sympathetic to Durant noted, “Kyrie sabotaged everything,” but Durant is reacting more to the effects than the cause, and he now views the Nets as unsalvageable. “There’s no use in (him) taking sides when it’s all too far gone,” the person said. In essence, the Nets were right in principle, but wrong in practical terms, failing to understand that making Irving upset “was going to drive Kevin away.” It’s instructive to note that for all the chaos, all the havoc and all the stress, Durant still wants to play with Irving, according to league insiders.
The difference in the tax penalty — somewhere around $15 million extra in the immediate, a whole lot more throughout a longer-term deal — caused Lacob and the Warriors to balk. It stung several in the organization, per sources. They’d found Payton and grown to not only love the person but also understand the value of his unique skill set. It translated to winning. For the first time, they’d failed to retain one of their own due to an unwillingness to meet a financial demand.