Was Kyrie Irving almost a Los Angeles Laker?
A new report suggested that it was something that the Lakers had internally considered pursuing this past season in an attempt to reunite LeBron James and Irving in Hollywood. The idea came about earlier in the year while Irving had been sidelined due to his unwillingness to get vaccinated, according to SNY’s Ian Beagley.
While a deal never materialized, the idea was discussed by some inside the Lakers organization, the report stated. It was unknown if there had been any internal consensus on making a play to acquire Irving and at the time no indication ever appeared publically that the two sides had even been in contact about a deal involving Irving.
It was reported earlier this year that the Nets had been open to trading Irving and the Nets point guard himself even recently said that he had worried about his future in Brooklyn while he was not allowed to play.
“It was only the journey to enjoy at that point, because I was sitting at home and — I don’t even want to say sitting at home,” Irving said during a recent appearance on the ETCs with Kevin Durant podcast. “I was wondering at home what my future was going to look like, you know? Whether I was going to be traded, whether I was going to be released, whether I was going to get the opportunity to be on another team, how I was going to spin this for myself in a positive way.”
Kyrie Irving was eventually allowed back in the fold in late December with the Nets as COVID wreaked havoc on the Brooklyn Nets roster. He made his season debut in Indiana on Jan 5, but was limited to playing just on the road until late March when New York City Mayor Eric Adams amended the vaccine mandate.
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In the end, Irving was not the one the Nets traded, instead, it was James Harden in a deal that brought Ben Simmons to Kings County.
If a trade for Irving ever materialized between the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets it would have brought James and Irving together again for the first time since the two won an NBA title in Cleveland in 2016. Irving forced his way out the following season, which brought him to Boston and then Brooklyn.