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NBA

Kyrie Irving regrets his rift with the Cavaliers and LeBron James

Clearly among the most talented in the NBA, the point guard has divided opinion, but he’s as honest as they come.

Paul Rudder
Update:
Kyrie Irving regrets his rift with the Cavaliers and LeBron James
EZRA SHAWAFP

While he is without doubt one of the best players in the league, there is often the feeling with the Nets’ point guard that he could achieve more.

How did Kyrie Irving come to leave the Cavs?

Considered by many to be among the best to play the game of basketball, Kyrie Irving is at the same time a player who divides many. Indeed, since his departure from the Cleveland Cavaliers where he dominated the league alongside LeBron James, Irving has never been able to attain quite the same level of success since. That’s to say that after three trips to the NBA Finals, one of which resulted in a championship back in 2016, the silky skilled ball handler has to a certain extent been out in the cold ever since.

It should be said of course, that the Cavs team that he was a part of was quite frankly sensational. Led by James, there was also Kevin Love and then Irving himself, such that when Irving requested a trade in the summer of 2017, many were left scratching their heads and wondering why he would want to leave a team that was clearly a title contender on any given day, to make his way in the league on his own? At the time, the narrative we received gave us the idea that Irving had grown tired of playing in James’ shadow, but when asked recently Irving made it clear that it was actually the result of his own personal issues as opposed to the sport itself.

Kyrie Irving has regrets

Speaking openly Irving was actually quite sincere about where he was at during his time with the Cavs and more over, where he wasn’t. “If I was in the same maturity line and understanding of who I am [now], and I look back, we definitely, definitely would’ve won more championships,” Irving expressed. “Because there would’ve been a better man-to-man understanding [with LeBron] about what I’m going through. I didn’t know how to share my emotions. I didn’t know how to do that. So instead of sharing, I isolated myself.” Irving went on to add that he regrets not reaching out to LeBron during the period when he requested a move away from the franchise.

“We didn’t talk during that time,” Irving said. “When I look back on what I was going through at that time, I wish I did [talk to LeBron], because it would’ve been a good understanding of what the future will hold for both of us and we know how much power we both had together. Me and him in the league together running Cleveland, and then being able to put a better team together every single year would’ve definitely been worth it.”

The past is the past for Kyrie Irving

While there will be those who pick through Irving’s comments in the hope of uncovering controversy, the reality is that the star point guard is not lamenting the past, but rather acknowledging what could have been were he in a better place at the time. Let’s be honest Cleveland with LeBron and Kyrie were as good as it gets. It goes without saying that had they stayed together longer there would have more than likely been other trophies in the cabinet. Reminiscence is a natural thing and when put alongside his recent admission regarding how his vaccine stance affected his present team - the Brooklyn Nets - one begins to understand that Kyrie Irving is as honest as he is talented.

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