Irving played just 33 games for the Nets last season (both the regular season and the playoffs) due to New York City’s vaccine requirements, his refusal to get the vaccine, asianbookie and other personal reasons. His prolonged absence was one of the reasons for the team’s collapse. Not only were they swept by the Boston Celtics in the first round of the playoffs, but they also had to trade James Harden to the Philadelphia 76ers after a loss to the Nets.
The biggest extension Irving offered in the offseason strained his relationship with the Nets, but he opted to exercise a player option in the final year of his current deal to keep him for another season or trade him for some assets. So far, the latter option has gone nowhere.
“Right now, Kyrie Irving, he chose his contract, he’s committed to the Nets, and from everything I’ve been told, he’s been doing everything behind the scenes…I think you’re going to get from Kyrie Irving. Seeing just a level of professionalism and I think that’s what he’s shown since opting in…I think the odds are still there right now, the plan is for him to stay with the Nets going into training camp and season,” Shams said on “The Pat McAfee Show” Tuesday.
That should be good news for the Nets, bk8 who have been dealing with Kevin Durant’s trade requests. In 29 regular-season games for the team last season, Irving averaged 27.4 points, 4.4 rebounds, 5.8 assists, 1.4 steals and 3.4 three-pointers while shooting 41.8 percent. While he’s focused on playing basketball, he’s still an efficient isolation scorer, making a difference multiple times.
The Nets will need him to continue doing so beyond 33 games in 2022-23. Whether Durant ends up staying or leaving, he doesn’t have much chance of playing like he did in the previous two seasons, especially after his recent meeting with team owner Tsai Chongxin.
Shams revealed that Durant asked Tsai Ing-wen at a meeting this week to fire Nets head coach Steve Nash and general manager Sean Marks, or trade him. Tsai responded on Twitter on Monday: bk8 malaysia “Our management and coaching staff have my support. We will make decisions in the best interests of the Brooklyn Nets.”
Durant and Irving teamed up with the Nets in the summer of 2019, and it took Durant a year to recover from an Achilles injury, but he was the team’s best player for the next two seasons. Irving missed 133 games in those three seasons due to injuries and other reasons. The Nets acquired Ben Simmons in the trade for Harden, but Simmons did not play for the team due to injuries and other reasons.