Nets unlikely to keep Russell should they land Irving

Nets free agent guard D'Angelo Russell is being courted by several teams, the Timberwolves among them.

The Brooklyn Nets won’t likely re-sign standout guard D’Angelo Russell should they acquire Kyrie Irving in free agency, according to Ian Begley of SNY.tv.

The Nets have strongly been linked to Irving, who is opting out of his contract with the BostonĀ  Celtics and entering free agency. One report suggested Irving has all but officially decided to join the Nets.

Begley confirmed that notion.

“As of late this week, teams interested in pursuing Kyrie Irving remained under the impression that the Nets were the odds-on favorite to land the point guard, per sources,” Begley reported. “But no team interested in Irving, including the Knicks and Lakers, had been led to believe that they are out of the running to sign him, those sources say.”

Russell is a restricted free agent, meaning the Nets would have the right to match any offer he received from another team — if they so decided.

Meanwhile, Begley and The Athletic reported that the Indiana Pacers would have an interest in Russell should he become available.

Russell and the Nets showed lots of promise in qualifying for the playoffs, where they lost to the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round.