It’s officially the start of draft week, which means that it makes perfect sense for Shams Charania to report that Kyrie Irving and the Brooklyn Nets are at an ‘impasse’ (subscription required). But if Kyrie Irving were to end up on the New York Knicks, that would make absolutely no sense.
Now, this could all be a smoke screen, but it’d be hilarious if Kyrie were to leave Brooklyn. That fanbase over there just knew that pairing Kevin Durant and Kyrie together would result in the organization’s first NBA championship.
Here we are in the summer of 2022 and Kyrie’s due for an extension and he has nine days left to make a decision on his $36.9 million player option. And if things in Brooklyn go completely south (and that’s what it’s looking like), the point guard could be suiting up for a new team in 2022-23.
But please, don’t let it be the Knicks.
Kyrie Irving to the New York Knicks would set the organization back
But one of the most anticipated free-agency situations involves Brooklyn’s Kyrie Irving, who has a June 29 deadline on his $36.9 million player option for the 2022-23 season. However, multiple sources tell The Athletic that conversations about Irving’s future have gone stagnant between him and the Nets. An impasse currently exists among the parties that clears the way for the seven-time All-Star to consider the open marketplace, those sources said.
After the Nets got swept by the Boston Celtics in the first round of the playoffs, Kyrie said:
“I don’t really plan on going anywhere,” Irving said after scoring 20 points on 13 shots in the Nets’ loss to Boston. “Like I said, this added motivation for our franchise to be at the top of the league for the next few years. And I’m just looking forward to the summer, and just building with our guys here.”
Oh, and months before Kyrie signed with Brooklyn in 2019, he stood on the floor at TD Garden and reassured Celtics fans that he was going to re-sign with the team. So, while Kyrie did keep his word about not getting vaccinated, you should take what he says about his future plans with a grain of salt.
Yes, he’s an elite point guard. He’s averaged 20+ points every season of his 11-year career but two (he averaged 18.5 points per game as a rookie and 19.6 in 2015-16), he helps to space the floor, and an opponent’s hand in his face doesn’t keep him for knocking down even the most impossible of shots.
But if New York wants to build a winning culture around its young players, Kyrie shouldn’t be considered by the front office. The drama that inevitably surrounds him would set the Knicks back, not make them better. Look at what happened to the Nets. Kyrie’s lack of availability for the better part of 2021-22 set Brooklyn back big time on the team’s pursuit of a title.
New York, let’s learn a lesson from our younger brothers. If the Los Angeles Lakers want Kyrie, so be it, but should he be a Knick? Absolutely not.