Kyrie Irving recently made waves with comments he made on a Twitch live stream. The All-Star point guard was unexpectedly candid on the stream about the Brooklyn Nets and their recent playoff elimination that came at the hands of the Boston Celtics. Irving commented about how the sweep in the playoffs was ‘humbling’ for the Nets and also how they’ll approach it next season.
“We got 4-0’d my G. We got 4-0’d. It was meant to happen like that. Motivation bro. We needed that humbling experience, especially going against the Celtics. It was already built to be that matchup. We’re gonna see them again, we’re gonna have to. They’re gonna be where they’re gonna be. But those youngins over there in Boston, bro, I got to see them grow up. So to see them do what they did last year on the Finals stage, making it that far, I’m glad they had to go through us,” Irving said.
Kyrie Irving on Goal for Next Season
Irving went beyond stating how the elimination last season affected the team, but also a goal that he set for himself moving forward into next season. Among those goals is being a ‘complete player’ and getting it up on both ends of the floor. Irving shared the goals after being asked what the plan is for next season.
“Get ’em up. Get ’em up. I’ve gotta get it up on both ends of the floor, bro. I’ve got to be a complete player,” Irving said on the Twitch stream. “I’m coming for different hardware this season, bro. I’ve been in the lab.”
After a summer of messy contract negotiations, Irving is in a contract year. The All-Star point guard and the Nets were unable to agree on a long-term contract extension, and they were also unable to find a trade partner for Irving. They had a lot of talks with the Los Angeles Lakers to help Irving and LeBron James reunite in Hollywood, but the Laker never offered a package that the Nets wanted for Irving.
Because Kyrie is in a contract year, some have already shared their MVP-caliber expectations that they have for the controversial point guard. Irving has a lot to prove and must play at a high level to attract the contract he wants this coming offseason. This year, the only team pursuing Irving on the open trade market was the Lakers, can a strong season change that in the year to come?
However, according to Irving in this recent quote, the MVP trophy isn’t the only award that the superstar is going for. He noted a desire to increase his play on both ends of the floor and bring an added defensive presence. “I’m coming for different hardware this season.” Whether that is the NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year award or an NBA Defensive First Team nod, Irving notes that he has something to prove next season.
Irving Could be Dealt at Trade Deadline: Sources
The Nets growing from this experience of their elimination and the offseason is crucial to his future with the franchise. While some analysts are predicting that the star will have an MVP-caliber season, one NBA GM told Heavy.com that Irving and his expiring contract could be dealt at this year’s trade deadline if the Nets aren’t winning. When asked about reports that Durant could be traded at the trade deadline the executive noted it wouldn’t be KD traded in February, but it could be Irving.
“Not at the deadline, no,” the Eastern Conference Executive told Heavy’s Sean Deveney when talking about Kevin Durant. “Maybe Kyrie, because of his contract, he is going to be a free agent. So if the year is a disappointment early on, then yes, you would at least have to explore the trade market on Kyrie. You won’t get good value because of all the baggage Kyrie has and because it would probably be a short-term rental. We’ll see how it goes with the Lakers, but if they have a good year and feel like they’re just a Kyrie away from contending next year, they’ll be in a position to get him next summer. So that drags down his trade value.”