clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Report: Kyrie Irving Trade Demand Was a Long Time Coming

According to an ESPN report, Kyrie Irving has been unhappy with the situation in Cleveland for a while now, and things came to a boiling point earlier this month.

2017 NBA Finals - Game Five Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

It has been a rather dreadful summer for the Cleveland Cavaliers. After their NBA Finals loss to the Golden State Warriors in June, the team dismissed GM David Griffin, was unable to lure Chauncey Billups to the same position, missed out on landing Jimmy Butler and Paul George, and was informed, on July 7, that All-Star guard Kyrie Irving wanted a trade, according to an ESPN report from Ramona Shelburne, Dave McMenamin and Brian Windhorst.

Irving is reportedly tired of playing second fiddle to LeBron James, and watched while fellow point guards Damian Lillard and John Wall were made the main options on their respective teams.

“But there were ancillary issues that bothered Irving, too, such as how James' good friend Randy Mims had a position on the Cavs' staff and traveled on the team plane while none of Irving's close friends were afforded the same opportunity. Irving chafed about how peers such as Damian Lillard and John Wall were the center of their franchises and catered to accordingly. There's irony there, as Wall was envious of Irving's Nike shoe deal and Lillard has never advanced beyond the second round of the playoffs. Irving has been to three Finals and has a championship.”

The same report indicates that the Portland Trail Blazers may have played a role in the Cavaliers’ inability to land Paul George, further frustrating Irving.

“On draft night, as the Chicago Bulls were finalizing a deal with the Wolves to move Butler, the Cavs were feverishly trying to assemble a three-team trade with the Pacers. The Denver Nuggets had a strong desire to acquire Kevin Loveand became a legitimate trade partner with Indiana. The Nuggets were willing to include wing Gary Harris and the No. 13 pick in that night's draft to get Love, and the Cavs would reroute the assets to Indy for George, sources said.

“But they couldn't complete the deal. Indiana was working on another option with the Portland Trail Blazers, sources said, as they were offering a package with three first-round picks for George. Eventually, everyone moved on and the Nuggets traded the No. 13 pick to Utah in a package for Trey Lyles.”

Although Irving’s meeting with the Cavs brass took place July 7, the news of trade demand was not made public until this past Friday. Irving has reportedly listed the Minnesota Timberwolves, San Antonio Spurs, New York Knicks, and Miami Heat as his preferred destinations. As of now, he remains in Cleveland.