Why Max Kellerman Thinks Celtics Might Be Better Off Without Kyrie Irving

Kyrie Irving already has verbally committed to re-signing with the Celtics, but should Boston survey its options before inking the star point guard to a long-term deal?

While the Celtics have yet to live up to expectations this season, Irving has been a consistent bright spot averaging 22.9 points and 6.4 assists per game through 28 contests played. Irving, 26, still has a number of prime years left in him, but Max Kellerman believes the C’s should look at the bigger picture without the Duke product.

During Thursday’s edition of “First Take” on ESPN, Kellerman explained why he’s not completely sold that Irving being the franchise player for years to come is the best move for Boston.

“They might be better off without him if they have a chance, obviously, to move him in a package for AD (Anthony Davis) or something like that,” Kellerman said. “Do you want to pay a guy who plays like Kyrie with a problem with his knee going forward? A super-max contract, which he’s going to want. The fact of the matter is they shared the ball much better when he went down last year. He’s not the problem and he’s willed them to win in recent weeks, I’ve seen that in several games. But I’m not convinced that they’re not better off without him. Obviously getting something for him, but better off without him.”

Irving’s injury history is undeniable, and the Celtics’ 2018 postseason run makes the guard seem more expendable. That said, there’s a short list of players more invaluable than Irving, so Boston really would need to be cashing in in order to trade the five-time All-Star.

Aside from Irving, the Celtics will have a number of tough decisions on their hands over the next two offseasons as Terry Rozier, Marcus Morris, Al Horford and Jaylen Brown all will be coming off the books.

Thumbnail photo via Tim Fuller/USA TODAY Sports Images

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