Kyrie Irving’s trade demand is a warning to all potential buyers: the Nets star hasn’t changed a bit

If you thought Kyrie Irving had changed, saw the flaw in his arrogant, narcissistic, team-busting ways, recommitted himself to the Brooklyn Nets and basketball in general, think again. The guy couldn’t make it three months after his last team suspension before launching another potential bombshell into the Nets’ locker room and season.

As a matter of fact, Irving wants to trade before next Thursday’s deadline, according to multiple reports and as confirmed by CBS Sports’ Bill Reiter. So much for all the good vibes in Brooklyn. One day Jacque Vaughn has turned things around, the next Kevin Durant is injured, the Nets are losing seven of their next 11, and shortly thereafter Irving is threatening to leave his free agent this summer to hopefully get his way.


Rumor has it that Irving was looking to convert his All-Star game and a good few months’ lead into a long-term extension with the Nets, who, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, actually “offered Irving an extension with guarantee terms, an offer according to league sources that he declined became.”

From Charania:

Sources with direct knowledge of the negotiations, who were granted anonymity so they could speak freely, say the extension offer was not well received and differences of principle have emerged between the Nets and Irving.

In other words, Irving didn’t push through and instead of saying to himself, ‘You know what, Durant is coming back soon, we have a legitimate shot at winning a title, and I can explore my options this summer to another franchise.’ go,” he turns back to himself by taking the organization hostage.

How many teams does this guy have to blow up? The Nets really have (or had) something going on here. But then again, they had a championship thing in Cleveland, too, until Irving demanded from there. He then pledged his allegiance to Boston, only to wreck his final season there before racing to Brooklyn, where he created absolute disaster after absolute disaster.

I mean, the guy is a super close friend of Kevin Durant, at least that’s what we’re told, and he just doesn’t care if he ruins Durant’s season. Nobody is safe from this guy. no team No co-star. He’s a ticking time bomb, and teams thinking of trading for him are thinking about it right now, if they have any sane mind at all.

Are the Lakers desperate enough to do it? They would only give up that selection if they intended to sign Irving long-term. It’s a brutally hard call. If the Lakers get wind that Irving’s market is looking dry, they could wait for the summer to sign him as a free agent without giving up the pick. But that’s effectively giving up this season with no guarantee they’ll get Irving in the summer when they might not have the cap space anyway depending on what they do with the likes of Rui Hachimura and Austin Reaves.

Personally, I’d be more concerned with the Raptors for Fred VanVleet and Gary Trent Jr. if that was a viable alternative. The Lakers are a better team with these two guys on and off the field than they are with Irving. But the guy plays great and his talent is always tempting.

The Lakers and probably a handful of other teams are currently trying to figure out how much of Kyrie’s nonsense they can absorb and still come out a net positive on the court. Just ask this: how many teams were actually better at having Irving in their dressing room? Even if he plays well and behaves well, it’s only a matter of time. He proved that again on Friday.

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