Sorry, Brooklyn Nets Fans, You’re Stuck With Kyrie Irving For a While
Love him, hate him, or get easily annoyed by his antics, Kyrie Irving is here to stay.
Expanding on that claim a bit, news began to circulate earlier today that Brooklyn Nets' guard Kyrie Irving had responded to trade rumors, and reported offers, that connect the him to other teams. Irving has completed two seasons with the Nets after leaving the Boston Celtics, and has two more seasons remaining on his contract, the second of which is an option.
The Nets, however, find themselves over the luxury tax threshold. While it may be wise for the team to attempt to shed some salary, claims from Irving's agent have made it clear that they'll have to find that money elsewhere.
Kyrie isn't going anywhere.
Fox Sports' Nick Wright was the one to break the news earlier Wednesday:
In a move that I would classify as "classic Kyrie", Irving takes it a step further than asking for his release, or sitting out. No sir, Kyrie Irving would rather retire than play for a franchise other than the Brooklyn Nets. A claim like this instantly drops his trade value, and puts the team in a very difficult position.
That being said, can you blame him for wanting to stay?
Irving is 29 years old right now, and has dealt with injury issues (shoulder, ankle, etc.) in each of his last few seasons. When you weigh his injury history with his...well...unique behavior off the court, the writing may be on the wall. This current iteration of the Brooklyn Nets may be Irving's best chance to win another NBA title, which would be his first since 2016.
If you're the Nets, your decision has been made for you. You won't get anything close to fair value for the talent that Irving brings to the table (when healthy) if you trade him now. So, you have to attempt to keep him happy, and make him a contributing member of your starting line-up.
Love him or hate him, that's your one and only option right now.