While the Nets don’t appear to be aggressively shopping Kyrie Irving, they reportedly are still exploring the idea.
Per Ian Begley of SNY.tv, the Nets remain open to a trade involving the star point guard and have been taking calls from rival teams.
Irving, 29, has not been vaccinated and therefore, cannot play in games in Brooklyn. Rather than have him play less than half the time, the Nets decided to sit him altogether. He has yet to appear in a game this season.
“If the Nets trade Irving, they don’t have to worry about the ramifications of his return to the team,” Begley wrote. “The trade market for Irving, who can opt out of his contract after this season, is unknown. But the Nets wouldn’t be dealing from a position of strength in any Irving transaction.”
Opposing executives recently weighed in on Irving’s trade value.
“For the most part, every front office and coaching staff is scared to death of him and doesn’t want to touch him,” Michael Scotto of HoopsHype quoted a league executive as saying. “Honestly, it might’ve been four teams before this (his refusal to get vaccinated). He’s a guy that front offices don’t trust. Coaches don’t want to deal with him. Players like him.”
“I am doing what’s best for me. I know the consequences here and if it means that I’m judged and demonized for that, that’s just what it is,” Irving said. “That’s the role I play, but I never wanted to give up my passion, my love, my dream just over this mandate.”
Irving, 29, averaged 26.9 points and 6.0 assists in 54 games last season, his second in Brooklyn.