HomeBasketballMikal Bridges Joins New York Knicks as Nets Load Up on Picks

Mikal Bridges Joins New York Knicks as Nets Load Up on Picks

The Brooklyn Nets completed a significant roster change on Tuesday, sending their best player, Mikal Bridges, to the New York Knicks and reaching an agreement with the Houston Rockets to restore the franchise’s first-round selections lost in the James Harden trade.

After vacillating between chasing the playoffs and the draft lottery in the aftermath of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, the Nets made a decision and now have 16 first-round choices available until 2031, including four in the stellar 2025 NBA draft.

Bridges’ desire to rejoin his three former Villanova teammates on a championship contender, along with the Knicks’ belief in their ability to retain him for the long haul, prompted the Nets to finally unload their plethora of draft picks in a massive trade, according to sources.

New York reportedly overloaded the market with a protected 2025 first-round pick from the Milwaukee Bucks, an unprotected 2028 pick swap between the Knicks and the Nets, a 2025 Brooklyn second-round selection, and four unprotected first-rounders (2025, 2027, 2029, and 2031) as a result of rapid escalating talks between Nets general manager Sean Marks and Knicks president Leon Rose on Tuesday afternoon and evening.

Nets and Rockets negotiators were almost in the same room at the same time, discussing the return of the franchise’s 2025 and 2026 first-round selections in exchange for Phoenix’s 2025 and 2027, with the possibility of receiving the 2029 first-round pick in a trade if it was the best of three first-round choices from Dallas, Houston, and Phoenix.

The Rockets are positioning themselves to be aggressive in future trade possibilities with the Suns, should that organization need to disintegrate. For the time being, the Suns want to continue competing with Durant and Devin Booker. However, getting those Phoenix selections provides the Rockets an advantage in a potential trade if a Suns player, notably Booker, who is 27 years old and on the Rockets’ timetable, becomes available. Durant may also become a possibility.

Once the Nets agreed to the Bridges trade, it only made sense to chase the selections given in the Harden deal. In this manner, the Nets can finish at the bottom of the rankings knowing they’ll be rewarded with the opportunity to choose one of the stars of the 2025 class, which includes Ace Bailey, Cooper Flagg, and Dylan Harper.

The Nets had wanted star-level players to pair with Bridges, but they did not become available, and Brooklyn eventually discovered that many clubs, including Memphis and Utah, were ready to give large draft packages for Bridges early this week, according to sources. Nonetheless, New York had been building an arsenal of assets and had nine first-round selections ready for trade — and Rose outperformed the Nets to execute the first trade between the two clubs since 1983.

According to insiders, the Nets may make further deals for assets on draft day Wednesday, and those 16 first-round selections might expand if Brooklyn finds a deal for Cam Johnson. The Nets have launched a full-fledged reconstruction, starting with the Knicks’ relentless pursuit of Bridges on Tuesday.

Abu Bakar
Abu Bakar
Abubakar is a writer and digital marketing expert. Who has founded multiple blogs and successful businesses in the fields of digital marketing, software development. A full-service digital media agency that partners with clients to boost their business outcomes.


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