Your Los Angeles Lakers are currently in the midst of squaring off against All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving’s Dallas Mavericks, but it’s no secret that LA was hopeful to trade with the Brooklyn Nets for Irving’s services around the trade deadline a few weeks ago.
Kyle Goon of The Orange County Register reports that the chatter was so pervasive that several LA players even thought Irving was going to be donning the purple and gold for the home stretch of the 2022-23 season.
“Yeah, I feel like everybody kind of felt like that,” reserve small forward Troy Brown Jr. said during a Friday practice. “Like, you never know with the trade deadline stuff. Obviously he went to Dallas. But at the end of the day, the NBA, guys are professional regardless of whatever happens. So, I like the guys that we have now.”
Goon notes that Los Angeles All-Star forward James clearly still has interest in playing with Irving, his teammate on the Cleveland Cavaliers from 2014-17. James selected Irving to his All-Star team this past weekend, and praised Irving afterwards in a postgame press conference.
“It’s always great to team back up with Kyrie,” James said Sunday. “You know how I feel about him both on the court and off the court. It’s always good to see him. I’m very proud of him. Very proud of the man that he has become in his life right now.”
Per Goon, Los Angeles will be able to re-sign many of its new additions this summer, even if it has to exceed the current tax cap to do so.
Should things not shake out the way LA hopes, however, it will be able to probably carve out about $40 million with which it could sign Irving, an unrestricted free agent, this summer.
Will LA bring in someone as volatile but talented as Irving? Should it? We’ll find out.
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