Insider Drops Truth Bomb About Kyrie Irving Intentions for Next Season

Kyrie Irving

Getty Kyrie Irving #11 of the Brooklyn Nets dribbles during the first half against the Cleveland Cavaliers at Barclays Center on April 08, 2022 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City.

Kyrie Irving is locked in to be a member of the Brooklyn Nets for the 2023 season. It is a win for the Nets after there was uncertainty on if he would be part of the team moving forward. Irving had a player option for this upcoming season where he could have elected to assess the free agency market. But in the last days leading up to his decision, he opted into the final year of his deal.

Though Irving opted into the final year of his deal, he was not offered a contract extension from the Nets and will be a free agent heading into next offseason. After playing just 29 games last season because he was ineligible to play home games at Barclays Center because of his unvaccinated status for COVID-19, this season is considered a prove-it season for the seven-time All-Star.

Irving is looking to improve on a 2022 season where he averaged 27.4 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 5.8 assists per game. According to Brandon “Scoop B” Robinson of Bally Sports, the Nets guard is aiming to win the first league MVP award of his career.

“Nets PG Kyrie Irving has been in the gym, focusing on weight training and core fitness this off-season,” Robinson said. “Those close to the PG tell [Bally Sports] Irving’s focused on having an MVP caliber season literally. “He’s more than just a dribbling sensation.””

Multiple reports have confirmed Kyrie’s desire to remain with the Nets, and he could be aiming for a long-term deal with the franchise this summer. Winning an MVP this season could justify his reasoning for being deserving of such a deal.

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Kevin Durant Return Is What’s Best for Everyone

Kevin Durant and Kyrie are set to return to the Nets this season which is good news for the franchise. The Nets front office spent much of the summer working to find a deal for Durant, who requested a trade from the franchise on June 30. The two sides worked diligently to find a deal, but the Nets asking price for the 12-time All-Star was too high for any team to realistically meet without breaking up the entire team. As a result, Durant will be a member of the Nets moving forward.

A Durant return was the best option for both sides. Even if a team were to have satisfied the Nets’ request Durant would find himself on a team that was scarce in talent, and the Nets preferred to keep their superstar.

In the end, the Nets had all the leverage as Durant signed a 4-year $198 million extension to stay with the franchise last summer, which contractually binds him to the Nets until the 2026 season. In short form, the Nets didn’t have to move him, despite his request.

KD, Kyrie Starting Season Together for Just Second Time

Now Brooklyn enters this year with Durant and Irving ready to start the season together for just the second time since joining forces in 2019. Durant was still recovering from his ruptured Achilles in the 2019 NBA finals in their first season as teammates, and last year the Nets sidelined Irving for the first half of the season because he was unvaccinated, which only allowed him to play road games.

The Nets have a wild card in three-time All-Star Ben Simmons, who they acquired last season at the trade deadline when they shipped All-Star guard James Harden to the Sixers.

Simmons has not played an NBA game since June of 2021 as a herniated disc in his back prevented him from playing in 2022 and eventually required him to have surgery this offseason. However, the last season he played, Simmons was a finalist for the Defensive Player of the Year award.

In addition, long-range specialists Seth Curry, who was also acquired in the Harden trade, and Joe Harris will return to the lineup. With two remaining open roster spots, the Nets could have one of the deepest teams in the league when it’s all said and done.

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