LeBron James has moved on from Cleveland, but his former sidekick beat him to the punch.
The Cavaliers lost franchise players in consecutive summers, as the team traded Kyrie Irving to the Boston Celtics last year before James joined the Los Angeles Lakers at the turn of free agency this offseason.
James and Irving both find themselves in great, new situations, but their breakup in Cleveland still has left fans with questions. While the answers to many never will be revealed, former Cavs general manager David Griffin recently shed some light on what might have driven the two superstars apart.
“Kyrie and LeBron didn’t have drama as individuals,” said Griffin said on the “Good N’ Plenty w/ Jeff Goodman” podcast, as transcribed by WKYC. “They could laugh and joke and make fun of each other just like everyone else did on the team. But there was more and more friction in the process in terms of how we go about winning games. It became really evident to Kyrie that he wasn’t going to have the template from which to find out how great he can truly be because he wasn’t going to have the ball enough. And when you’re trying to be point guard who makes everybody better that can be complicated. So I think once we won the championship it became clear to him that maybe he was going to need to do something else. And once I was gone, I think it became clear to him that he probably wanted to execute that plan sooner rather than later.”
Irving found the perfect setting in Boston, where he immediately became the face of an organization littered with up-and-coming talent. While knee surgery cut the point guard’s 2017-18 season short, Irving has the chance to open some eyes with his leadership in the upcoming campaign, which many believe will see the Celtics reach the NBA Finals.
Ironically enough, James now finds himself in a similar situation, as The King has garnered the duties of trying to lead a young Lakers team back to championship glory.
Thumbnail photo via Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports