Kyrie Irving Is Not Planning To Leave Boston Very Soon.
On the floor of the TD Garden, against the Boston Celtics subscribers, Kyrie Irving has confirmed that he intends to stay in the franchise from next season. The 2018-2019 regular season has not started yet as Kyrie Irving has already tackled the following year against fans of the Boston Celtics. The playmaker, invited to TD Garden at a franchise event, has confirmed his desire to stay in Boston starting next season.
It sounds like Kyrie Irving was impressed from the start of his dealings with Danny Ainge and the Celtics.
“They had the same attitude. They just wanted to show me what being a Celtic is about, and hoped I would come around, and I absolutely did. I look forward to the franchise and the players we have here.” said Irving.
The 26-year-old playmaker has entered the final of his five-year contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2015 (he has an option last season). According to ESPN, Kyrie Irving could have extended this summer with the Massachusetts franchise but would have lost almost $ 80 million in wages.
Ainge, the team’s president of basketball operations, did indeed take a flier on being able to re-sign Irving following that league-shaking trade in the summer of 2017. Irving didn’t have the Celtics in mind when he initially demanded a trade from the Cavaliers that spring.
That’s where rumors of a Jimmy Butler/Irving bromance started. The then-Bulls forward was keen on his team engineering a deal for Irving, and though Chicago never answered with an acceptable offer, the auction hall was opened. Ainge, with the finest trove of assets in the league, was then able to step in with the best offer.
But the Celtics never received a signal from Irving at the time that he would be willing to re-sign in Boston. Ainge put faith in the strength of Brad Stevens and the Celtics culture to make the sale to the enigmatic young star.
“Yeah, there’s risk in a move like that,” Ainge said yesterday. “We knew there was a chance he would want to go somewhere else. But he had a fantastic year for us.”
Indeed, by all accounts — including Irving’s — he loved the new environment, and the chance to lead a group of young talent like Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart and Terry Rozier, an understudy good enough to start in most other NBA situations.
Irving had reportedly even indicated to the team a willingness to re-sign as far back as last season, before finally deciding to make his feelings public on Thursday.
Nothing is final until a new contract is signed, but Irving’s announcement throws some water on next summer’s vaunted free agent class. It also blows holes in the tires of the New York Knicks, who had very much been counting on that Irving/Butler rumor, and may once again be window shoppers when the opening bell to the 2019 free agent market sounds.