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#pounditSaturday, June 25, 2022

Articles tagged: Kyrie Irving

Clippers president has telling quote about potential Kyrie Irving trade

Kyrie Irving wearing his Nets uniform

Feb 1, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) during the second half against the Washington Wizards at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Clippers are one of the teams Kyrie Irving would reportedly welcome a trade to if the Brooklyn Nets move him, but that interest may not be mutual.

Clippers president Lawrence Frank was asked about the key qualities the team would take into account when considering potential trades. Frank said “basketball character” was hugely important to the Clippers. He suggested that reliability and commitment are key factors the team would assess.

“Basketball character is, can you be counted on every single day to do what you do at the highest level, and how committed are you through those habits?” Frank said. “I think all those things are leadership skills.”

Frank never mentioned Irving. Perhaps he was not necessarily trying to send a message. Considering the Nets have reportedly had some reservations about giving Irving a long-term deal because of commitment concerns, it’s hard to imagine the Clippers being eager to add him based on Frank’s stated priorities.

Irving has reportedly given the Nets a list of six teams he would welcome a trade to if he is moved. The Clippers are one of those teams. But if they stick to Frank’s words, they might not have real interest.

Report: Kevin Durant may not ask for trade from Nets

Kevin Durant in street clothes

Feb 3, 2020; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets small forward Kevin Durant (7) smiles during a time out during the second quarter against the Phoenix Suns at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Durant’s commitment to the Brooklyn Nets has reportedly been in jeopardy due to Kyrie Irving’s questionable future with the team. But there’s a chance that Durant sticks around even if Irving were to leave.

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowksi reported on “SportsCenter” Thursday that Durant has not informed the Nets that he would request a trade if Irving departs.

“Kevin Durant has not told the Nets that if Kyrie Irving leaves, that means he’s going to ask for a trade,” Wojnarowski said. “[Durant wants to know], ‘what would a reconfigured Nets team look like? How would they try to reshape the roster so that the Nets would be able to return in the near-term and have a championship contender?'”

Earlier Thursday, Wojnarowksi reported that Irving would be willing to go to at least six teams via sign-and-trade deals if Irving and the Nets fail to come to a long-term agreement. The Athletic’s Shams Charania also reported Thursday that Durant was actively monitoring developments with the Nets and considering all future options.

In 55 games this past season, much of which were without Irving, Durant led the Nets in points per game (29.9) and assists per game (6.4). He also led the team with 26.3 points per game in their first-round playoff loss to the Boston Celtics.

While Durant and Irving have a close relationship, it appears that the Nets’ reported hesitancy in committing to Irving for the long-term may not close the door on Durant’s time in Brooklyn as well.

Nets owner Joe Tsai ‘likes’ curious tweet amid Kyrie Irving drama

Joe Tsai looking on

May 9, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; Taiwanese businessman Joe Tsai (left) looks on during the second half of the preseason WNBA game between the New York Liberty and the China National Team at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The Brooklyn Nets are providing yet another “oof” moment in a week that has already been chock-full of them.

Nets owner Joe Tsai “liked” a curious post to Twitter on Thursday. The tweet that Tsai “liked” read, “Just drove by [Nets GM] Sean Marks exit on my way to work. I didn’t see white smoke. But I know that man is cooking. IN SEAN MARKS WE TRUST. Team and culture > any one player. Excited to get back to Nets basketball.”

The “like” is still visible on Tsai’s page, and you can see it for yourself here.

The timing of it all is interesting to say the least. The Nets are in some major turmoil right now thanks to star guard Kyrie Irving, who appears to be in the process of pursuing a trade. The uncertainty over Irving’s situation is now looking like it could cost the team Kevin Durant as well.

While the tweet that Tsai “liked” was also showing support for Marks and the Nets, the “Team and culture > any one player” part of it read like a clear shot at Irving, especially amid this week’s drama. Some social media users also pointed out that the account it came from has a history of bashing Irving and even mentions Irving in a negative light in its bio.

We know that Tsai has reportedly been fed up with Irving for a while. Now it looks like Tsai is beginning to show his disgust in some very public ways too.

Talk of Kyrie Irving going to Lakers heats up with latest rumors

Kyrie Irving wearing his Nets uniform

Feb 1, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) during the second half against the Washington Wizards at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Kyrie Irving is facing an uncertain future with the Brooklyn Nets, and the Los Angeles Lakers are viewed as one of the teams that could land him if he leaves. Some are skeptical that he would want to play with LeBron James again, but it sounds like the star point guard is very open to it.

ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith said on “First Take” Thursday that Irving has already been calling LeBron to discuss the possibility of reuniting.

“He’s calling LeBron already. He’s calling LeBron,” Smith said, via Ryan Glasspiegel of the New York Post. “Remember that dude that he left, that he didn’t want to be a sidekick or little brother to? Remember that? … I happen to know he’s calling LeBron these days. Isn’t it beautiful how the world turns? There was once a soap opera called ‘As the World Turns.’ It’s ‘As Kyrie Turns.’ That’s the soap opera. We’re gonna hold onto that one all summer long. This is where he’s at.”

Irving has until June 29 to decide if he will exercise his $36.9 million player option for next season. The Lakers don’t have the salary cap space to sign him, but a sign-and-trade is a possibility. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst said Thursday that he would not rule out Irving taking the midlevel exception, which is around $6 million, to join forces with LeBron in L.A.

Irving and James won an NBA title together with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Irving then decided he did not like being the second option behind LeBron. Though, Irving later came to appreciate how difficult it is to lead a team and apologized to LeBron.

The idea of James and Irving teaming up again seems farfetched, but the Lakers are on Irving’s reported list of teams he would want to play for if he leaves Brooklyn.

Report: Kyrie Irving has given Nets list of at least 6 trade partners

Kyrie Irving looks on during a game

Mar 15, 2022; Orlando, Florida, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) during the second half against the Orlando Magic at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Kyrie Irving appears to be laying the ground work to leave the Brooklyn Nets this summer.

Irving has until June 29 to decide if he wants to exercise his $36.9 million player option for next season. He has been discussing a new contract with the Nets as that deadline looms. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Irving has given the Nets a list of teams he would like to be traded to if the two sides cannot work out a new deal.

That does not necessarily mean Irving will leave Brooklyn, but it certainly is an indication that he is open to it. If he does want to play for another team, the Nets would rather get something of value in return. That is why they would likely want to have Irving opt in to facilitate a sign-and-trade.

As Wojnarowski noted, none of the teams Irving would be interested in playing for have enough salary cap space to sign Kyrie as a free agent. That is another reason a sign-and-trade would make sense.

A separate report on Thursday claimed Kevin Durant is also weighing options for his future. Durant is under contract with the Nets through the 2025-26 season, but he probably would want a fresh start elsewhere if Irving leaves.

It is also entirely possible that Irving and Durant are trying to put pressure on the Nets. The Nets are said to be hesitant to sign Kyrie to a long-term deal because of all the drama surrounding him in recent years. Perhaps Durant is trying to give his close friend an assist by helping Irving secure a new contract.

Could notorious ex-teammate reunite with LeBron James on Lakers?

LeBron James looking on

Jan 21, 2022; Orlando, Florida, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (6) against the Orlando Magic during the first quarter at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

LeBron James has won four championships spread out with three different franchises during his NBA career. He has many former teammates, and different relationships with all of them.

But there is one former teammate more notorious than them all: Kyrie Irving.

James and Irving were teammates for three seasons on the Cleveland Cavaliers from 2014-2017. They reached the NBA Finals in each season together and won the championship in 2015-2016. Then Irving decided he no longer wanted to be teammates with James and forced a trade to Boston.

The two seemed to smooth things over in the time that passed since their breakup. Irving recognized the error of his ways.

Since they patched things up, there have been rumors of a possible reunion between the players on the Los Angeles Lakers. Those rumors are popping up once again.

Veteran NBA reporter Marc Stein has said that James and Irving have been in contact recently, possibly to talk about a reunion. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski has identified the Lakers as the “most significant threat” to land Irving.

There is a big hurdle in Irving joining the Lakers, however. Irving has a player option for over $36 million. If he joined the Lakers, it would be for around $6 million. Losing $30 million would be a significant financial sacrifice for a guy who just sacrificed a huge amount of salary last season.

When it comes to Irving, you never know what he is thinking, and you can’t rule out anything.

Report: Nets have big fear about Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant with a hood on

May 8, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) warms up before game against the Denver Nuggets at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Troy Babbitt-USA TODAY Sports

The Brooklyn Nets seem to be at a crossroads regarding their future.

Kyrie Irving has a $36.5 million player option for next season. The sides need to figure out whether Irving will pick up his option or whether the sides will agree to a new deal. There is talk they could end up in a split.

But the Nets have a big fear about what an Irving exit could mean.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Nets are worried that if Irving doesn’t return to the team, Kevin Durant could want out. Other teams around the NBA supposedly are even cheering for Kyrie to leave so that Durant ends up on the trade block.

This is a tough spot for the Nets, but it’s of their own doing. They knew when they signed Durant prior to the 2019-2020 season that they were reluctantly getting Irving in a package deal. Irving is flaky, unmotivated, injury-prone and bad for team chemistry. But the choices for Brooklyn at this point are to bring Irving back so they can retain Durant, or blow up the whole thing.

The Nets went 48-24 and lost to the eventual NBA champion Milwaukee Bucks in the conference semifinals two seasons ago. They could be optimistic and hope that if they retain their core, they could have another season of similar success in 2022-2023.

Kevin Durant not trying to recruit players to Nets?

Kevin Durant dribbles

Oct 11, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) in action against the Philadelphia 76ers during the first quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Kyrie Irving this week appeared to subtly downplay all the rumors about his future with the Brooklyn Nets, but Kevin Durant may not be convinced.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, people around the NBA have noticed that Durant is not recruiting other players to play with him next season the way he has in previous years. That could have something to do with the uncertainty surrounding Irving.

“In previous offseasons, rival agents and players would tell you of Durant’s eagerness in talking to potential free agents,” Wojnarowski wrote, via So far, that hasn’t been the case with him, sources say. Outside of Irving, the Nets’ most important free agent is guard Patty Mills, who still hasn’t decided on whether to exercise his $7.2 million player option. Around the Irving drama, the Nets’ environment has made it harder to keep and court role players, sources say.”

The panic-inducing take for Nets fans would be that Durant is not recruiting other players because he is not even certain about his own future in Brooklyn. He and Irving are close friends and chose to team up together a few years ago, so it would stand to reason that Durant has an idea of Irving’s plans.

Of course, Durant still has plenty of time to recruit. Irving has until June 29 to decide if he will exercise his $36.9 million player option for next season. He could also sign an extension with the Nets. Durant is signed through the 2025-26 season, but many believe he will want out if Irving leaves.

Irving had a cryptic response on Twitter to all the recent rumors. We all know how crazy NBA offseason speculation can be, but there is a reason for that. Stars are constantly switching teams and changing their minds. No one would be shocked if that happens with Irving this summer.

H/T Bleacher Report

Report: Kyrie Irving had disrespectful act after Steve Nash practices

Kyrie Irving looks on during a game

Mar 15, 2022; Orlando, Florida, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) during the second half against the Orlando Magic at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Brooklyn Nets are said to be torn on whether they should sign Kyrie Irving to a long-term extension, and the star point guard’s relationship with head coach Steve Nash may have something to do with that.

Stephen A. Smith said on ESPN’s “First Take” Monday that there were times last season when Irving undermined Nash, whether he intended to or not. Irving reportedly sometimes held his own practices with Nets teammates after their regular practices ended. Smith viewed that as a sign of disrespect.

“Did you know that this brother Kyrie Irving last season would conduct his own practices?” Smith said, via Bleacher Report’s Timothy Rapp. “So when Steve Nash had the team on the floor, and they practiced, they would finish and he’d go and get five guys and conduct his own practice. … Do you have any idea how disrespectful that is to Steve Nash? He conducted his own practices after Steve Nash conducted a practice. I mean, he’s driving him crazy.”

The context of Irving’s players-only practices would be important. If he was holding his own workouts because he felt Nash’s were ineffective, that is a huge problem. On the flip side, it’s possible Irving was just trying to be a leader and put in extra work with his teammates. Smith obviously got the impression it was the former.

Irving has until June 29 to decide if he wants to exercise his $36.9 million player option for next season. Teams around the NBA reportedly believe there is a chance he could leave Brooklyn. Irving had a cryptic response on Twitter after the latest batch of rumors about him surfaced.

Kyrie Irving has cryptic response to talk of him leaving Nets

Kyrie Irving wearing his Nets uniform

Feb 1, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) during the second half against the Washington Wizards at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Kyrie Irving has been the subject of a great deal of speculation as the decision deadline for his player option looms, and the Brooklyn Nets star may be growing tired of the rumors.

On Monday, Shams Charania of The Athletic reported that conversations between Irving and the Nets about the star point guard’s future with the franchise have “gone stagnant.” Teams around the NBA have kept tabs on the situation and believe there is a chance Irving could leave Brooklyn.

Not long after Charania’s story was published, Irving sent a cryptic tweet.

We’re not sure what the message was supposed to be, but Irving is not all that active on social media. There is no way the timing of the tweet was a coincidence.

One recent report claimed the Nets are hesitant to sign Irving to a long-term deal because of all the drama that has surrounded him over the past two years. The seven-time All-Star could not play in home games for much of this past season due to his vaccination status. The year before, he was away from the Nets for a while for personal reasons.

Irving’s player option is worth $36.9 million. We doubt he would opt in unless it was to facilitate a sign-and-trade with another team, and there are supposedly several that have interest in him. Irving has until June 29 to opt in, so there should be more clarity by then.