Although a few other teams were briefly connected nets guard Kyrie Irving Since the beginning of free agency, his trading market seems “lakers or broke,” says Michael Scotto of HoopsHype. With Irving seemingly attracting little interest as a trading chip, both he and the Nets are sending out signals that they’re ready to continue their relationship.
Brian Windhorst, who appeared on ESPN’s Get Up Wednesday (video link), said the “vibe” coming out of Brooklyn is that the Nets are happy with both Irving and the fall Kevin Durant still on her list.
“This could be a negotiating position, or it could be a wise decision if you don’t like the trade offers you have.” said Windhorst. “The market for Durant hasn’t been as lucrative as the Nets had hoped and the market for Kyrie is very thin. It’s essentially the Lakers and the trade offer isn’t great. If you don’t like what you have, do you just close the ranks and try to start again?
Meanwhile, a source close to Irving told The New York Post’s Brian Lewis that Irving had not asked to be traded and had “firm intentions” to play for the Nets in 2022-23.
“How did we get into this situation because of (a) the trade when he decided to do it?” Lewis’ source said. “Here’s the situation: He signed up, which means he had and has intentions to play with the Brooklyn Nets. KD decides he wants out and now everyone is talking about trading Kyrie right?
“Kyrie didn’t ask for a trade. If the Nets don’t want him, that’s a different story altogether. Kyrie hasn’t said he wants a deal. He agreed. (So where did the trade talk come from? Is it because KD requested a trade and now everyone’s like, “Let’s trade Ky?” Kyrie went for it.”
True, there’s no indication that Irving specifically called for a deal like Durant’s, but it’s still hard to take the source’s comments at face value.
Reports from multiple outlets in June indicated that Irving was seriously exploring other destinations, only deciding on his contract with the Nets after it became clear that none of the teams on his wish list were willing to make him a lucrative, long-term offer for free agency. Since then, multiple reports have suggested Kyrie would like to end up with the Lakers.
While Lewis’ source’s comments are an attempt by Irving to save face and win the PR battle, the fact that the All-Star guard appears poised to spend 2022-23 in Brooklyn is one good news for the team. That means the Nets shouldn’t feel any pressure to accept the Lakers’ best offer for Irving if it falls short of their asking price.
Here’s more about Irving:
- The Lakers don’t want to give up several first-round picks for trades Russell Westbrook, league sources say Scotto. The belief, as Lewis writes, is that the Nets are looking for two first-round players from LA (2027 and 2029) in every trade between Westbrook and Irving.
- A member of outsider The organization believes Irving wants to play for the Dallas head coach Jason Kid, whom Scotto says he idolized as a child. However, Scotto confirms that the Mavs appear to have no real interest in trading for Kyrie, as previously reported by Bleacher Report and the Dallas Morning News.
- Rival executives and league insiders are “divided” over whether the Lakers can strike a deal for Irving, writes Dan Woike of the Los Angeles Times. Many of those insiders believe any LA trade for Kyrie will be on hold until the nets resolve Durant’s trade request, according to Woike, who wonders if the team could move to other destinations like Buddy Held or Eric Gordon instead of waiting for Irving.