Out of all the sudden departures we saw this offseason, the least surprising was Kyrie Irving going from Boston to Brooklyn. The All-Star guard ran his course with the Celtics, as rumors were swirling about his inability to see eye-to-eye with teammates.
Irving’s decision to join the Nets didn’t shock everyone in the NBA. However, there have been rumblings about when he ultimately made up his mind.
Spencer Dinwiddie of the Nets said that Irving hinted at potentially signing with the team as early as December.
Danny Ainge is the latest figure in the NBA to open up about Irving, revealing to the public that Irving told him that he wanted to go home to Brooklyn. This would basically validate all the stories about him knowing he’d leave Boston before the season even finished.
Ainge went on Toucher and Rich, a morning radio show in Boston, to discuss how talks went down with Irving.
“Kyrie did express to me on a couple of occasions between March and the end of the season that he really wanted to go home,” Ainge said on Toucher and Rich. “I got the impression at that point he wanted to go play in Brooklyn more than he wanted to play in New York, or Boston.”
Danny Ainge on @toucherandrich:
“[Kyrie] did express to me on a couple of occasions between March and the end of [season] that he really wanted to go home. I got the impression at that point he wanted to go play in Brooklyn more than he wanted to paly in New York, or Boston."
— Chris Forsberg (@ChrisForsberg_) July 18, 2019
Clearly, the Knicks weren’t even in consideration for Irving.
Losing Irving in free agency wasn’t ideal for the Celtics, but they did replace him with fellow All-Star Kemba Walker.