The relationship between the Cavaliers and Kyrie Irving is deteriorating quickly.
After news emerged late Friday that Irving had asked for a trade, Cleveland turned into chaos central. LeBron James was blindsided by Irving’s request, but both he and Kevin Love appeared unconcerned on social media. NBA fans (and maybe front-office types) rushed to the ESPN Trade Machine and sent Irving all over the league in hypothetical deals. Oh, and there was that bit about Irving reportedly believing James leaked the news about the trade request in the first place. Yikes.
Suffice it to say, things aren’t going well for the Cavs, and it’s looking like the state of the franchise won’t be getting better any time soon. The Cavs are operating as though an Irving trade is almost inevitable, according to ESPN’s Zach Lowe, who cites several sources in reporting that there is little chance of the Cavs salvaging their relationship with Irving.
It’s important to note these situations are fluid, as feelings and emotions can always change. No one knows that better than James, who chose to return to Cleveland in 2014 after he was excoriated by Cavs owner Dan Gilbert and thousands of fans for The Decision in 2010. A trade demand does not equal an actual trade. Remember, even the great Kobe Bryant once demanded a trade from the Lakers in 2007, and he ended up staying for nearly another decade and winning two more titles before he retired.
At this point, though, the Cavs are on the trade train. Lowe reports Cleveland wants a big return in any Irving deal, most importantly a blue-chip young player. ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, who initially broke the news of Irving’s request, doesn’t see Irving wearing a Cavs uniform much longer.
Well, in that case… back to the Trade Machine!