CANTON, Ohio- The Cavaliers may…….or may not have a problem on their hands, as All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving has requested for a trade.
Word got out quickly that Kyrie Irving met with Cleveland’s front office and asked Dan Gilbert personally for a trade. Irving said he would prefer the Spurs, Heat, Knicks or Minnesota.
There has also been mention that Irving’s dad, Drederick Irving, has been heard from behind the Cavs bench yelling at the coaching staff to give Irving the ball more often. Irving apparently told the front office that he no longer wants to play in James’ shadow and wants to be the focal point of the team and its offense. Notice he wants to be the focal point of the offense, not defense. I’ll get into that later.
- My first thought. Irving has no idea just how good he really has it. Kyrie is talented, there’s no doubt about it. But, Irving is not ready to be the focal point of a team. From what I’ve read, a lot of people think Irving has let having a title on his resume go to his head and his father isn’t helping matters.
- Irving has forgotten about the first 3 seasons in which he was the focal point. Before James returned, the Kyrie led Cavaliers went 78-152. Now grant it, they didn’t have much around him, the point to this, is that Irving became a much better playing once Lebron joined the team. Kyrie wants the ball all the time and wants most of the shots, he isn’t the type of player that will make the players around him much better, yet. Lebron has proven over his career that he is.
- Why on earth, other than being closer to home, would Irving want to join the Knicks is beyond me. They have next to no talent on that team and he wouldn’t even reach the playoffs. Yes, that is true even though the East has become even weaker since last year.
- I will say this. Instead of requesting a trade and wanting to be the focal point on offense, Kyrie should focus more on becoming a much better defender, wanting to get his teammates more involved on a consistent basis and playing better without the ball in his hands. Instead, he’s making himself look selfish.
- I did say, in an article before the 2016 season, that Irving and Love should be averaging more points than James, taking pressure off Lebron. Problem here? Irving needs to take a lot more shots and isn’t as efficient as James is when it comes to points off attempts.
- If Irving goes out West, he’ll have to get through Golden State just to get to the finals. Right now, I’m not sure if anyone out West can do that in a 7-game series. A friend of mine is high on Minnesota, and he feels adding Irving would make them the second-best team in the West. My problem with that? Minnesota lacks playoff experience and Irving wouldn’t be the focal point, that belongs to Andrew Wiggins.
- Kevin Love made his opinion known on Twitter saying “Life is amazing. No complaints here. Things are a little peculiar. But no complaints”. Sounds to me like Love knows he’s in a great spot with this team, knows his role and is thankful for being in this position. Completely opposite of Irving right now.
- Are the rumors of James leaving causing Kyrie to feel this way? I said in my Broulis Beat Report podcast that, unless the team falls flat on its face or makes some bizarre roster changes for the worse. I feel the bench has been improved with Cleveland bringing back Korver and adding Jeff Green. Jose Calderon is kind of an iffy for me for now. I still say they need to work on developing Felder. Derrick Rose is not someone I’m all that big on signing. Mainly because of his history with injuries. Now, if reduced minutes will help avoid that, I don’t have a problem with that, but that’s a HUGE IF. Rose will also never have that first quick step that he did when he first came into the league. Back to the point, I don’t see James leaving, and I’m not the only one that feels that way. And yes, I have many reasons. But that’s for another day.
- The only team that I’d be worried about if he joined, is the Miami Heat. They do have some talent on that team. But, there is a big problem with that. Miami already has a good starting point guard in Goran Dragic. Is he better than Irving? From an assist standpoint, yes. Irving is a better shooter and driver to the lane. But, I don’t see the Heat parting ways with him.
As you can tell, I really think Irving has lost his mind and needs to appreciate his situation and know his role. If this Cleveland team just took James off and left everyone else on, they’d probably still make the playoffs only because it’s so weak, but who knows if Irving and Love could do enough to get them there. Tristin Thompson would go back to looking like an average player and be on the trade block constantly. James makes this team better than what it really is because of how great of a player he is. Does he still need a solid cast of players around him to make a run at winning a title? Yes. But James is the guy, make no mistake about it. Cleveland can afford to let Love or Irving go and they’d still probably finish in the top 3 seeds. If you took off both Love and Irving and replaced, it would depend on the players. I’d still say yes because Cleveland would be getting back something really good in exchange for both because of how good both players are.
At the end of the day this is my message for Kyrie Irving……………KNOW YOUR ROLE, SHUT YOUR MOUTH, and work on your game instead of being selfish.
Credit all authors of images used in both article and as cover image : Nick broulis