Kyrie Irving very well could have been a visitor Tuesday night at TD Garden.
Irving requested a trade from the Cavaliers this summer and got his wish by surprisingly joining the Boston Celtics, arguably Cleveland’s biggest rival in the Eastern Conference. But the 25-year-old had other preferred destinations — and the New York Knicks were one of them.
“It’s pretty easy, man,” Irving told a small group of reporters at TD Garden after Boston’s 110-89 win over the Knicks, via ESPN.com’s Ian Begley. “They were on my list for a reason, I think you guys know that. Close to home, that’s about it.”
Irving grew up in West Orange, N.J., and his father hails from the Bronx, so his prior interest in the Knicks makes sense. But the All-Star guard is in Boston now, and he wasn’t interested in digging up the past after dropping 20 points and seven assists on New York.
“I’m not going to go into detail about all that extra stuff because I know where this is going to lead,” Irving said. “I know exactly where this is going.”
The Minnesota Timberwolves, San Antonio Spurs and Miami Heat reportedly also were on Irving’s wish list this offseason.
Irving can opt out of his contract and hit free agency in 2019, so it behooves him not to discuss any other teams, especially when he’s so new in Boston. As for the lowly Knicks — they were just happy Irving considered them this summer.
“Any time a great player in this league has you on their list, you got to be happy about it,” Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek said after the game, via the New York Post. “He ended up here in Boston. He’s going to really help those guys.”
Thumbnail photo via Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports Images
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