There are several Los Angeles Lakers fans who want Kyrie Irving on the team next season given his rapport with LeBron James and Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report has come up with a way for that to happen.
In a May 18 story titled “Lakers’ Hypothetical Blockbuster Trades to Shake Up NBA Offseason,” Buckley proposed that the Lakers trade D’Angelo Russell and a future first-round pick to the Dallas Mavericks for Irving. It would be a double sign-and-trade since Russell and Irving both become unrestricted free agents this summer.
“Kyrie Irving is a natural target for the Lakers even though The Athletic’s Tim Cato reported they’re ‘uninterested’ in pursuing him this offseason,” Buckley wrote. “The Lakers valued Irving enough to offer two future first-round picks (the most they could trade) to the Brooklyn Nets before the mercurial guard was sent to the Mavericks. When Irving went elsewhere, James didn’t hide his disappointment. That surprised absolutely no one, since the pair previously led a championship run together on the Cleveland Cavaliers.
“It’s hard to imagine L.A. is fully out on Irving now. There are nights when this offense just can’t get out of the mud. Catch one of those, and it’s easy to see how much of an impact Irving could make with his shooting, efficient scoring and shot-creation. The Lakers would need to jump through a few financial hoops to make this happen, since teams above the first salary-cap apron can’t receive players via sign-and-trade. That’s fine. If it means losing out on a player like Rui Hachimura, that’s a sacrifice L.A. could be willing to make to get a player of Irving’s caliber.”
The Lakers Are the Betting Favorites to Get Kyrie Irving
According to the latest odds from Sportsbetting.ag, the Lakers have the best odds (+200) to acquire Irving, who averaged 27.1 points, 5.1 rebounds and 5.5 assists in 60 games with the Brooklyn Nets and Mavericks this season. Los Angeles tried to acquire Irving from Brooklyn after the All-Star guard requested a trade, but Dallas swooped in first, which didn’t sit well with James.
“I can’t sit here and say I’m not disappointed on not being able to land such a talent, but someone that I had great chemistry with,” James told ESPN’s Michael Wilbon in February. “And know I got great chemistry with on the floor, that can help you win championships, in my mind, in my eyes.”
Irving and James led the Cleveland Cavaliers to the 2016 championship over the Golden State Warriors. The Cavaliers were 132-51 when LeBron and Kyrie were in the lineup together from 2014-15 to 2016-17.
NBA Exec to Heavy Sports: I Predict the Lakers Will Get Kyrie Irving
An NBA executive told Heavy Sports senior insider Steve Bulpett that he believes the Lakers will “figure out a way” to pay Irving and “bring him in” this offseason.
“So do you stay the course and stick with D-Lo and Rui (Hachimura) and all of that group and say, ‘OK, let’s play with the two stars and try and have some reasonable depth?’ I predict that they’ll try to figure out a way to pay Kyrie Irving and bring him in,” the exec said.
Irving, 31, has career averages of 23.4 points, 3.9 rebounds and 5.7 assists.