Celtics’ Brad Stevens takes the positives from Kyrie Irving’s statement
For some reason, what was once a steady relationship between the Boston Celtics and Kyrie Irving has now turned into a shaky one, as rumors now indicate that the All-Star guard is having second thoughts about staying with the franchise.
However, the Celtics front office remains confident that they can keep Irving, who has also publicly stated in the past that he wants to stay in Boston. Even head coach Brad Stevens remains optimistic about Kyrie’s situation.
Brad Stevens tells reporters that Kyrie Irving "said a lot of things that were positive about [Boston]" … says it's the players job to "block out everything." Says it's hard, but the best teams and the best players do that.
— Chris Mannix (@SIChrisMannix) February 1, 2019
Everything seems to have changed in the past couple of months. When the season began, Irving said he’s willing to re-sign with the Celtics this summer. However, Boston hasn’t been able to find consistency this season. One week they’re playing like championship contenders, then they will struggle against cellar-dwelling teams.
Irving’s frustrations grew, and he’s been vocal about it, calling out teammates, especially the Celtics’ young core, for their lack of effort. This created speculations about Kyrie’s dissatisfaction with the franchise, leading some fans to believe that he might sign with another team next summer.
Two teams are believed to be the frontrunners to sign Irving if he walks away from the Celtics — the Los Angeles Lakers and the New York Knicks. Both teams have plenty of cap space and will reportedly go after him once he becomes a free agent in July.
Of course, the Celtics still have a legitimate shot to keep Irving, but they are surely rattled with all the rumors out there. If they weren’t worried one bit before, they have enough reasons to be now.