Sportress of Blogitude

Report: Kyrie Irving shut out teammates for two days during playoffs

Kyrie Irving’s desire for a trade from the Cleveland Cavaliers of course surfaced last month. But the writing may have been on the wall long before that — perhaps as far back as right after the Cavs’ triumph in the 2016 NBA Finals — according to some reports.

And now a new report indicates Irving’s unhappiness was on full display during the 2017 postseason. According to comments made by ESPN’s Dave McMenamin during a recent podcast, Irving didn’t speak to his Cavaliers teammates for consecutive days during the playoffs.

The version of events evidently involves James Jones, who spent the last three seasons of his career with the Cavaliers and was recently hired as vice president of basketball operations for the Phoenix Suns. McMenamin had the following to say during a recent The BBall Breakdown Podcast, as transcribed by Pro Basketball Talk:

I think I reported this on SportsCenter this week. He saw Kyrie Irving in the playoffs this year – in between the first round, when they beat Indiana, and the second round, when they played Toronto – go consecutive days without speaking to a teammate at practice.

On that stage. It’s one thing to say people go through their ups and downs in the regular season. But when you get to the playoffs, “when the main thing is the main thing, and we’re brothers, and we’re pulling together to get this thing done” – even at that level, there were still things that made him sullen or reclusive from his teammates.

A report shortly after Irving’s trade demand went public indicated that the star point guard may have boosted his trade stock by toning down his partying behavior and maturing.

While that may be true, these recent allegations, if accurate, would have to be viewed as a source of concern for interested teams.

This is all the more troubling given Irving already is being criticized by some for demanding a trade, as it belied a team-first attitude in the first place.

Suffice to say, the entire Irving trade demand saga certainly has had some dramatic twists and turns, to put it mildly.