As per sources confiding in ESPN, the Brooklyn Nets have extended a qualifying offer to D'Angelo Russell, rendering him a restricted free agent amid the frenzied 2019 class. By all means, the qualifying offer doesn't ensure that Russell will be a Nets player at the start of next season. It does, however, give the franchise added leverage as they figure out their backcourt of the future.

If the chips don't fall their way, aka Kyrie Irving signing elsewhere contrary to earlier reports, the Nets can and would in all likelihood match any incoming offer for Russell's services, by the dollar amount.

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Brooklyn has been earmarked by NBA pundits, as a desirable landing spot for marquee players such as Kevin Durant, and the aforementioned Kyrie Irving, but nothing as of yet, is set in stone. The Lakers are reported to have interest in both a reunion with D'Angelo Russell and the potential recruiting of Kyrie Irving in forming a lethal triangulation with Anthony Davis and LeBron James. It's hard to ascertain which alternative is of greater interest to the Lakers' brass if any.

Just the other day, Andrew Wiggins was reportedly offered to The Nets in exchange for the rights to negotiate with D'Angelo Russell's camp. With all these contradictory reports piling over each other, it might be best to reserve judgment until Kawhi Leonard and Kevin Durant make their final decision in a few day's time. Your guess is as good as mine heading into next season.