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Big up to Brooklyn

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We have that and more in Monday’s NBA newsletter.

Brooklyn Nets v Boston Celtics Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

NBA free agency began Sunday evening. It pretty much ended Sunday evening, too. Kawhi Leonard is the only max-level star who hasn’t already made a decision on where to play next season. The next best free agent on the board is probably DeMarcus Cousins. Thank goodness the NBA cracked down on tampering!

Here’s our running tally of the biggest winners and losers of free agency. The Nets were the team that scored the vaunted Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving coup, an incredible turn of fortune for a team that spent much of the last half-decade somewhere between laughingstock and forgotten team. Durant, of course, will miss the season recovering from a ruptured Achilles tendon. But Irving should give Brooklyn a turbo boost next season. Can’t wait to see how Kyrie and KD get along on the court.

Durant’s choice of the Nets led to the biggest shocker of the night: the Warriors elected to use that move to acquire D’Angelo Russell in a sign and trade with Brooklyn. Yes, D’Angelo Russell is now a Golden State Warrior. The five-time defending West champs signed Russell to a four-year, $117 million deal. Yes, that’s the wildest possible turn of events on every level. The Warriors had to trade Andre Iguodala to avoid being hard-capped after the deal; they gave up a future pick to the Grizzlies to salary dump Iguodala in Memphis.

There was lots, lots more. We’ll run down as much as possible in the next section, but there was so much there’s bound to be something missing.


Klay Thompson got his money from the Warriors.

Kemba Walker chose the Celtics. Boston worked out a sign and trade to send Terry Rozier to the Hornets on a pricey deal. Yikes.

Al Horford went to the Sixers! Philadelphia also paid big to keep Tobias Harris. And ...

It looks like Philly will pick up Josh Richardson in a sign and trade to send Jimmy Butler to the Miami Heat ... except that deal hit a snag when the Mavericks got involved.

The Bucks kept everyone but Malcolm Brogdon, who is heading to the Pacers, and added Brook Lopez’s twin Robin.

The Suns picked up their point guard with a three-year deal for Ricky Rubio.

The Magic kept everyone (Nikola Vucevic and Terrence Ross).

The Pelicans landed J.J. Redick and Derrick Favors.

The Jazz, who’d already traded for Mike Conley, added Bojan Bogdanovic and Ed Davis.

The Kings are going for it, re-signing Harrison Barnes and adding Trevor Ariza, Dewayne Dedmon, and Cory Joseph.

The Knicks ... yeah, the Knicks did stuff, too.


Gonna go light on links in the wake of the first blast of free agency news — more on Tuesday.

How the Nets got here. Zach Lowe on the Nets’ rise from the ashes.

A former NBA general manager explains how free agency actually works.

Kemba is not Kyrie, but the Celtics can still be better.

What D’Angelo Russell did for Brooklyn his short time there.

Fully imagining what LeBron James would have been as a football player.

The Lakers are one step from being the most hated team ever.

Against James Dolan.

And finally: Maya Moore stepped away from basketball to help seek justice for a man she believes was wrongly convicted.

Be excellent to each other.