Kyrie Irving has requested a trade from the Cleveland Cavaliers, and with two years on his contract, Terry Pluto is reporting that he won’t commit to any team that trades for him long-term.
“I’m told Irving is not about to commit to any team at this point. He has two seasons left on his contract and wants to keep his options open.”
Well, this makes it tougher on the Cavaliers when looking to deal him, as teams will most often look for assurances that they’ll be able to convince Kyrie to stay after parting with major assets to acquire him. That said, I think this has been reacted to a little more harshly than it should’ve.
It’s not really all that surprising that Irving doesn’t want to commit long term before being sent to an organization when he’s already locked in for two years (assuming he’s traded this summer). It would make sense that he’d ask whatever team that was trading for him to earn his long-term loyalty by proving that they’re a stable, competent organization in the two years after he joins them.
This is different than sending messages that he won’t re-sign in places that trade for him. That would depress his value much more than this, and that’s why it’s good that Irving has term on his contract.
Nonetheless, it appears that more and more that the Cavaliers aren’t going to get a super productive return out of this Irving deal. The awkwardness of the trade request and the Cavaliers short timeline to convince LeBron to stick around incentivizes the Cavaliers to move him before camp starts, and Kyrie’s understandable unwillingness to commit to a long-term deal will depress the market. We’ll see if the Cavaliers take a less-than-ideal package, or if they just bite the bullet and bring Irving to camp.