When Kyrie Irving declared in October 2018 that he planned to re-sign with the Boston Celtics in the offseason, it seems he still had eyes for Brooklyn.
Of course, that’s easy to recognize now, as Irving and Kevin Durant reportedly have teamed up and are joining the Nets. But back in October, it appeared Irving was giving about as clear a commitment to Boston as could be without actually putting pen to paper.
The New York Times’ Marc Stein shared an inside look at the Nets’ busy offseason, and he provided a fascinating story on Irving’s connection with the Nets.
In September, Irving was among a handful of individuals who took part in a Harvard Business School program for athletes. Among those also enrolled was Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie, who reportedly tried selling Irving on the Nets.
It appears Dinwiddie’s recruitment worked.
“Irving’s fondness for the Nets, which grew throughout a season of tension and disappointment with the Boston Celtics, is not merely an offshoot of his New Jersey childhood,” Stein wrote. “It stems in part from a hard sell of the franchise to Irving by Spencer Dinwiddie, the Nets reserve guard, after they shared a course at Harvard in September. Dinwiddie was Irving’s classmate in a Harvard Business School program for athletes, ‘Crossover into Business,’ that commenced last fall and continued remotely for a semester.
“It was there that the two players from disparate talent tiers began building the bond that led to a regular dialogue and, by Sunday, brought Dinwiddie to the Nets’ practice facility. Dinwiddie, who did not respond to a request for comment, was among the invitees summoned to join top team officials on the night Irving and Durant committed the next four seasons of their careers to the team that has spent virtually all of its 52-year existence in the Knicks’ shadow.”
Hey, good for Dinwiddie for being such a quality salesman, but that does make it all the more bizarre that Irving said he would re-sign with Boston less than a month later. Nobody forced him to do that, which adds another wrinkle to an already peculiar tenure in Boston.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images