With one word, Kyrie Irving seemingly confirmed everyone’s suspicions about his relationship with former teammate.
Irving, who requested a trade from the Cavaliers this offseason and was eventually dealt to Boston, said during an appearance on “First Take” that he had not given James a heads-up of his trade request. Told by Stephen A. Smith that given James’ standing as the best player in the world and the leader of that team, such silence could be taken personally.
“Yeah,” Irving responded.
The four-time All Star expanded on his answer by saying that he didn’t owe James or anybody else anything.
"I don't think you owe anything to another person in terms of figuring out what you want to do with your life,” Irving said. “It's not anything personal. I’m not here to tirade anybody. I’m not here to go at any particular person or the organization because I have nothing but love for Cleveland. I have nothing but love for the times that I spent there. It's nothing about that. There comes a time where you mature as an individual. It’s time to make that decision. There is no looking back from that standpoint. There is no time to figure out how to save someone’s feelings when ultimately you have to be selfish in that in figuring out what you want to do. It wasn't about me not wanting to win, it wasn't anything about that. I want to be extremely, extremely happy in perfecting my craft and that was the only intent that I had in all of this."
Added Irving: ”I think that it got much more attention because everybody else started coming out from who would think that their important opinion mattered most. I saw previous players, I saw past players, I saw current players speaking on something that had absolutely nothing to do with them. I’m appreciative of their comments, but at the same time, it’s ultimately my decision.”
Irving and James will have to communicate soon enough, as the C's and Cavaliers open the 2017-18 season against one another Oct. 17 in Cleveland.