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Windhorst: Kyrie Irving 'Focused on Forcing Himself' to Lakers in Nets Trade

Doric SamJuly 1, 2022

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Kyrie Irving likely will never play another game in a Brooklyn Nets uniform.

ESPN's Brian Windhorst reports that Irving's mind is set on heading out West.

"Kyrie Irving is out of town as fast as he possibly can. He's focused, as [Stephen A. Smith] said, on forcing himself to the L.A. Lakers," Windhorst said on Thursday's episode of SportsCenter.

Windhorst added that it won't be easy for the Nets to entice other teams to give up assets in exchange for Irving.

"Talking with league executives over the last couple of hours, the value of Kyrie Irving in a trade has absolutely plummeted," Windhorst said. "They know that he's gonna be a pure rental, and if he doesn't want to go to the situation he's been going to, it's unclear what he will do."

Irving had exercised his $36.9 million player option to remain with Brooklyn on Wednesday, but it appears that his end goal has always been to land in Los Angeles. Star forward Kevin Durant also reportedly requested to be traded on Thursday, compounding the Nets' problems.

While Irving might be pushing for a reunion with LeBron James on the Lakers, there's no simple way for the team to acquire him. B/R's Jake Fischer wrote that Los Angeles would need help around the league to absorb Irving's contract.

"For that to happen anytime soon, the Lakers would likely need to find a third or even fourth team that would be willing to absorb Russell Westbrook's $47.1 million salary and still find players to compensate Brooklyn for Irving," Fischer wrote.

The Nets are set for an eventful offseason, and Irving will continue to be draw the spotlight until a resolution is determined.

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