Out of the blue, rumors began coming out about a huge NBA deal Tuesday night involving Kyrie Irving. The Cleveland Cavaliers were in talks with a team to trade their young star point guard. That team was the Boston Celtics. Over the past few weeks, there were talks about how Irving wanted to come back home and play for the New York Knicks. As a matter of fact, the Knicks were one of the teams Irving would have liked to be traded too. Instead, the Knicks remain idle while the Celtics landed the disgruntled superstar.
New York Knicks Fail to Score Big as Boston Celtics Net Kyrie Irving
As the Knicks rebuild, the Celtics are building and winning at the same time. Celtics have rebuilt on the fly and have done it effectively. The Philadelphia Sixers have dealt with a lot of losing over the last five years. They hit a new low in 2016 by winning only ten games. But the losing might have been worth it. The Sixers look like a team on the rise with promising young talent.
On the other hand, the Celtics got their cake and are eating it too. Celtics have gone from an aging roster, players like Rajon Rondo, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, and Kevin Garnett, to building a young core of players around Kyrie Irving, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart, and Gordon Hayward.
This would be a great way to rebuild for any team. But the Celtics are coming off a season where they were the top seed in the East and reached the Eastern Conference Finals.
The Celtics swapped a good point guard with a younger point guard that is locked in for two years and has championship experience.
Knicks Stay Put
Meanwhile, the Knicks are bystanders and miss out on a big trade again.
Even when a player wants to come here, the Knicks still don’t get a player like Irving. The asking price for Irving was Kristaps Porzingis. This deal would have not made sense for the Knicks. The idea is to pair up Irving and Porzingis. This would’ve given them a nice foundation to build around and have this pairing around for a while. The Knicks would not make that deal. They should deserve credit for not making this deal because they would most likely do it in the past.
Still Looking for a Trade to Change the Franchise
One question still remains: when are the Knicks going to be involved in a deal that can change the course of the franchise?
Frank Ntilikina might turn out to be a great point guard one day. The Knicks drafted him because unlike most other players in the draft, Ntilikina played pro basketball overseas and is played against better competition than the college players.
That being said, Irving is a proven commodity in the NBA. He has a title under his belt. And the playoff experience is priceless. This experience is unteachable. The pressure of the moment is less likely to get to a player with that kind of experience.
In the last 17 years, the Knicks have had one trade that involved them getting an all-star, and that was the acquisition of Carmelo Anthony. The Knicks made the playoffs in his first couple of years here, and even though they did not make the playoffs in the last four years, they do have their all-star player to lean on when they need a big bucket.
Now with Irving wearing Celtic-green, the Knicks and their fans will have to endure more wins for their rival, while the Knicks go through more rebuilding, which likely results in more losing.
It is another deal that the Knicks were not involved with that involved a superstar. Kyrie Irving could have altered the course for this franchise. But once again, the Knicks’ fans will look back and think, “only if.”
CLEVELAND, OH – JUNE 09: Kyrie Irving #2 of the Cleveland Cavaliers reacts against the Golden State Warriors in Game 4 of the 2017 NBA Finals at Quicken Loans Arena on June 9, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)