Kyrie Irving was completely ignoring Steve Nash towards end of Nash’s tenure?
Kyrie Irving is about to have the eighth head coach of his NBA career, and that may not be a coincidence.
Veteran NBA writer Marc Stein shared a troubling anecdote about Irving and former Brooklyn Nets coach Steve Nash in a post to his Substack page this week. Having spoken with one NBA team’s advanced scouts, a group with extensive knowledge of opponents’ playcalls, Stein writes that there were about ten “easy-to-spot” instances during one of Nash’s last games as Nets head coach of Irving running a completely different play than the one that Nash called for from the sideline.
You can read Stein’s full reporting on the situation with Nash, who was fired by the Nets earlier this week, here.
Nash was in his third year coaching Irving and the Nets, going 94-67 (.584) with one playoff series win. But it was clear that Irving never respected Nash from the very start. Shortly after Nash was hired, Irving infamously said that “I don’t really see us having a head coach,” adding that both himself and teammate Kevin Durant could be head coaches on certain days.
Kyrie Irving and KD praised new Nets Coach Steve Nash on the ETCs podcast, then Kyrie added: "I don't really see us having a "head" coach. KD could be a head coach, I could be a head coach (some days)"
KD: "Jacque Vaughn could be a head coach one day. It's a collaborative effort" pic.twitter.com/kZMIpSVbd8
— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) October 2, 2020
A report also emerged a few months ago that Irving had supposedly pulled a disrespectful move on Nash at practices last year. Now Irving and Nash no longer have to deal with each other. But Brooklyn’s next coach may come with his own new set of issues.