Don’t bank on the Boston Celtics dealing Kyrie Irving before Thursday’s NBA trade deadline.
Irving’s long-term commitment to Boston was called into question last week after the 26-year-old said he plans to do what’s best for his career upon hitting free agency this summer. League sources told the Boston Herald’s Steve Bulpett the Celtics have no intention of trading Irving, though, even amid rumors the All-Star point guard could sign elsewhere after this season.
“Boston’s not taking calls on Kyrie,” one general manager told Bulpett. “That was made pretty clear.”
This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, but there’s been speculation recently about whether the C’s might consider trading Irving, who can opt out of his contract this offseason. Irving said before the season he plans to sign an extension with Boston, but his recent comments cast some uncertainty over his long-term future. He’s been linked to the Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks in rumors.
All the while, the Celtics have been eyeing Anthony Davis, whom they can’t trade for right now — thanks to the NBA’s “Rose Rule” — but figure to target aggressively this offseason if the New Orleans Pelicans don’t trade the superstar in the coming days. Boston reportedly isn’t a preferred long-term destination for Davis, but it’s fairly obvious the Celtics’ master plan involves re-signing Irving, trading for AD and then convincing the latter to sign an extension at some point.
The risk, of course, is the whole thing could blow up in the Celtics’ face if Davis lands elsewhere and Irving leaves in free agency without Boston receiving any compensation for its current star.
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