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After whiffing on trading for Anthony Davis last week, the Boston Celtics’ big hope going forward is likely to convince Kyrie Irving to re-sign with the team, rather than head to the Brooklyn Nets as he’s reported to be planning.
We’re going to go ahead and speculate that Irving refusing to pick up the phone could hamper those efforts.
Kyrie Irving reportedly shuts down communication with Celtics
Less than a week after Irving declined to opt into his $21.3 million option with the Celtics next year, Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe reports that Irving has “essentially ghosted” his team for the last two seasons:
The strangest part of the Irving situation right now is that it appears he has essentially ghosted on the Celtics. The people within the organization I have spoken with have made it clear that they have had little, if any, communication with Irving in recent weeks.
That’s probably bad news for the Celtics, who could be about to lose their leading scorer and assists leader from 2019 in Irving. The team has always had a capable third guard in Marcus Smart and could bring back restricted free agent Terry Rozier, but Irving’s production would still be quite hard to replace for a team that saw plenty of low points last year.
Irving used a similar tactic when he was trying to force his way out of the Cleveland Cavaliers, reportedly cutting off all contact with the Cavaliers and even keeping his teammates in the dark.
Shams Charania of The Athletic reports that Celtics officials are expected to meet with Irving, potentially before the NBA draft on Thursday, but that could just be the team’s attempt to confirm Irving is leaving before they use their three first-round picks.
For a while, the buzz has been that Irving is headed to Brooklyn, especially after the star point guard dropped his longtime agent last week. The suddenly imposing Los Angeles Lakers are reportedly considering a run at Irving, but cap concerns could get in the way of that.
Irving is a hard player to predict, and the Celtics probably know that better than anyone at this point.
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