Kyrie Irving Trade Rumors: Nets Heard 'Crickets' After Making Star Available in Fall

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVApril 27, 2022

Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) defends against Orlando Magic guard Cole Anthony (50) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Tuesday, March 15, 2022, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack

The Brooklyn Nets were reportedly open to trading Kyrie Irving in October amid the fallout from his refusal to receive the COVID-19 vaccination.

It turns out no one wanted him.

Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer reported the Nets heard "crickets" after making Irving available for trade.

Of course, the Nets weren't looking to offload Irving for free, so "crickets" is likely a relative term. Any team that had a package Brooklyn would even remotely consider likely chose not to part with it in order to acquire Irving, who has become perhaps the NBA's polarizing star.

While few doubt his individual brilliance, Irving has won two playoff series in his career without the help of LeBron James. He's missed significant time because of injury, took a midseason sabbatical in 2020-21 and spent most of this season ineligible to play home games because of his vaccination status.

All of this has taken place while Irving has rarely gotten along with teammates over a long stretch of time. His desire to be traded from Cleveland was rooted in a falling out with James, and he clashed with teammates in Boston before leaving for Brooklyn.

While Durant and Irving remain close friends, James Harden's midseason departure reportedly came at least in part because of tension with Irving. 

It's clear, at this point in his career, that Irving wants to play by his own rules and doesn't plan on changing for any organization. When he's on the floor and dazzling opposing defenders with ankle-breaking crossovers and tough pull-up jumpers, it's a lot easier to deal with. But combine Irving's inconsistent availability with his mercurial personality, and it's fair for teams to hesitate about giving up significant assets in a trade.

As it stands, Brooklyn is married to the Durant-Irving pairing for better or for worse.