Kyrie won’t be alone, either, as Kevin Durant is also expected to sign with Brooklyn.
Brooklyn is making a clean sweep tonight: Brooklyn will sign Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and DeAndre Jordan, league sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 30, 2019
Sources: Durant will sign a 4-year, $164M deal with the Nets; Irving will sign 4-years, $141M.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 30, 2019
Report: Irving, Durant both took less than max
Durant and Irving both took less-than max deals to allow the Nets to also sign DeAndre Jordan to a four-year, $40 million deal, ESPN reports.
The eight-year NBA veteran declined the $21.3 million option in the final year of his contract with the Boston Celtics in anticipation of signing a max deal in free agency.
Irving’s rough ride in Boston
After being sidelined for the Celtics’ 2018 playoff run that saw them take James’ Cavaliers to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals, Irving returned healthy last season and vowing a long-term future in Boston.
Anticipation was high for a Celtics team that finished one game short of the NBA Finals without Irving and Gordon Hayward in the lineup and had both All-Stars returning from injury.
But chemistry issues were apparent early, and the Celtics suffered a lackluster 4-1 second-round loss to the Milwaukee Bucks, who had quickly supplanted them as one of the Eastern Conference’s top contenders.
How will Irving fit with Durant, Brooklyn?
Irving’s value as a scorer and ball-handler remain unquestioned. He earned his sixth career All-Star selection last season while averaging 23.8 points, 6.9 assists and five rebounds while shooting 48.7 percent from the floor and 40.1 percent from 3-point distance.
Those are certainly max-player numbers. But the questions about his fit with other stars and leadership abilities have plagued him throughout his career and continue to be issues.
He forced his way out of Cleveland seeking a chance to be the No. 1 option on a championship contender. His time in Boston suggests that’s a role that’s not in the cards for him.
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