The Cleveland Cavaliers have made the NBA Finals three consecutive seasons, winning one NBA championship. While LeBron James is obviously the driving force behind the franchise, none of the Cavs success would be possible without the outstanding play of point guard Kyrie Irving.
The top overall pick in 2011, Irving has long been considered one of the top point guards in the NBA, and apparently, he is tired of being the second option behind LeBron. According to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, Irving has asked the Cavaliers to trade him:
Kyrie Irving is ready to end his run with the Cleveland Cavaliers, as league sources told ESPN that the guard has asked the team to trade him.
The request came last week and was made to Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert. Irving has expressed that he wants to go play in a situation where he can be a more focal point and no longer wants to play alongside LeBron James, sources said.
Word of Irving’s request has already gotten around to Cavs players including James who was reportedly blindsided:
James was informed of Irving’s request and was blindsided and disappointed, sources said. Other members of the team have learned of Irving’s intentions in recent days as well.
This was certainly something that came out of nowhere, but Irving had recently made comments about the Cavaliers being in a ‘peculiar’ place. It is possible that he is simply ready to blossom on his own in a better situation for himself.
If Irving is ultimately moved, it would completely change the hierarchy in the Eastern Conference and NBA as a whole. Cleveland is currently still the favorite to land in the NBA Finals, but that would change if Irving is gone.
An Irving trade, coupled with the ongoing rumors of LeBron possibly leaving next summer, could see the Cavaliers make a major tumble faster than anyone expected.