Celtics

Zion Williamson: "It would be dope to play with Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant"

Zion Williamson: "It would be dope to play with Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant"

The noise surrounding Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant and the Knicks doesn't seem like it's going to stop anytime soon. 

After a 91-61 victory over St. Johns University, Duke University standout Zion Williamson answered draft questions in front of New York reporters. Williamson told SNY's Adam Zagoria, "It would be dope to play with KD and Kyrie, but whatever team drafts me I'm going to be ready to play hard and work."

Williamson, who scored 29 points in the Blue Devils' win Saturday is the likely top pick this June in the NBA Draft, and with this answer, he joined in the NBA's rumor frenzy surrounding Irving and the Knicks. 

Reports surfaced about the "growing uncertainty" around Kyrie Irving's intentions to re-sign with the Celtics after the season despite committing to Boston in October.

Couple that with Irving growing frustrated with the media cycle and saying, "Ask me July 1," about his free agency, and the speculation mounts. 

Irving received cheers from hopeful fans at Madison Square Garden Friday as the Celtics handed the Knicks a 113-99 loss, but he said it's, "Nothing but a distraction."

The Knicks cleared enough cap space for two maximum slots this summer after their trade of Kristaps Porzingis, Tim Hardaway Jr. and Courtney Lee to the Mavericks.

New York has interest in using those two slots on Durant and Irving, while selecting Williamson with their top draft pick. New York currently has the worst record in the NBA at 10-41, giving them as good a chance as any at the first overall pick. 

Quotes like Williamson's lead to back page covers like this:

Will it happen? Who knows.

There's a lot of noise around the Celtics' best player and his future, so it's something the Celtics will probably have to endure the rest of the season. 

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

A. Sherrod Blakely's inaugural 2019-20 NBA Power Rankings

nba_power_rankings_102219_spark.png
NBC Sports Boston Illustration

A. Sherrod Blakely's inaugural 2019-20 NBA Power Rankings

BOSTON -- The NBA season will get going this week and that can only mean one thing … POWER RANKINGS ARE BACK!!!

And as we look at the NBA landscape at the start of the 2019-2020 season, it’s clear that this season has a predictably unpredictable feel about it.

Teams that for years began the season at or near the top like Golden State, are no longer a top-five lock out of the gates. Others who have spent the bulk of the last four or five years in basketball purgatory, seem to have a new lease on their basketball lives and find themselves among the top half of the league rather than being a perennial bottom-feeder.

It all sets the tone for what should be an exciting NBA season!

And with that, here’s NBC Sports Boston’s inaugural power rankings.

Click here for Blakely's full 2019-20 NBA Power Rankings>>>

16 reasons why 2019-20 NBA season is shaping up to be the best ever

16 reasons why 2019-20 NBA season is shaping up to be the best ever

NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-76ers starts at 6:30pm Wednesday with Celtics Pregame Live, and then Mike & Tommy have the call of the game at 7:30pm.

Unprecedented player movement. No clear-cut favorite to win the title. One of the most talked-about rookies in years. Superstar duos across the league.

As the 2019-20 NBA season tips off Wednesday night, there's no shortage of intriguing storylines to monitor.

Which team has the inside track on the 2020 title: Kawhi Leonard's Clippers? LeBron's Lakers? The Greek Freak and the Bucks? Harden-Westbrook 2.0? The new-look Sixers?

How will the Celtics fare now that Kyrie Irving is gone, presumably along with the team's chemistry issues? Will Zion Williamson somehow live up to the hype?

Those are just a few compelling topics that will garner headlines over the next eight months, and NBC Sports Boston's Chris Forsberg will be monitoring all of them.

Click here for 16 reasons why the 2019-20 NBA will be the best ever.>>>>>

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.