Just a couple days ago Kyrie Irving opted into the fourth year of his contract, citing a commitment to his teammates and organization. And today, on the dawn of free agency, a ‘Woj Bomb’ that announced Kevin Durant’s desire for a trade out of Brooklyn also placed Irving firmly back on the trade block. The Los Angeles Clippers, who have at times been linked to Irving, but at others firmly denounced interest in him, have also emerged as a potential destination.
While it is clear at this point that Lawrence Frank and the front office refuse to make any large-scale alterations to the roster in order to obtain Irving, there still could be a possibility that his trade value drops so low that the Clippers could have him while still keeping their core intact.
Brian Windhorst, while noting that the Clippers just signed John Wall and appear to have determined their point guard rotation already, reported that Irving could become so cheap that they would have no choice but to “at least revisit the concept.” He also noted the history between Kyrie and Clippers coach Ty Lue:
“Ty Lue was his coach in Cleveland. They left on bad terms, but I’ve been told that that is no longer considered an issue. I think it’s probably a long shot that the Clippers would want to do that but I’ve been told to keep an eye on it.”
There are both pros and cons to a potential Irving acquisition. With Irving set to make $36.5 million next season, the package in question is likely one consisting of Luke Kennard and Marcus Morris Sr. With the recent John Wall signing, and the return of Kawhi Leonard and others from injury, these two players will likely find themselves at the end of the rotation.
Whether the Clippers are still interested in adding Irving, a generational basketball talent, albeit a volatile element in the locker room, at all is yet to be seen. As is whether the Clippers’ scraps could be enough to move the needle for the Brooklyn Nets, who may face few other options.