Kendrick Perkins Rips Kyrie Irving For Trade Request From Nets

'The Brooklyn Nets don't have to do a damn thing'


February 3

Former Boston Celtics NBA champ and current ESPN personality Kendrick Perkins didn’t hold back, as he’s prone to do, when the trade request news of Kyrie Irving broke Friday.

Irving informed the Brooklyn Nets that he’d prefer to be dealt away before the Feb. 9 NBA trade deadline, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Irving, who will reach free agency following the 2022-23 season after four seasons with Brooklyn, reportedly was offered an extension by the Nets. However, the agreement contained stipulations that Irving and his team were not on board with, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

Through their first 51 games, the Nets have settled in relatively well despite an abrupt Steve Nash firing accompanied by multiple roster question marks ahead of the All-Star break. Yet, Irving apparently has sights elsewhere.

The news then prompted Perkins to unload and absolutely rip Irving. The former NBA veteran questioned Irving’s loyalty to teammate Kevin Durant and blamed him for last season’s departure of Philadelphia 76ers guard James Harden.

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“This is Kyrie Irving, a guy that you cannot trust,” Perkins said on ESPN’s “NBA Today” program. “Didn’t Kyrie Irving just say that Kevin Durant is his best friend, right? So where is the loyalty? If that’s your best friend, I don’t want that. Give me an enemy. For the simple fact that when you look at how Kevin Durant has been riding for Kyrie Irving since they arrived in Brooklyn, standing behind him by whatever his beliefs were, whatever he was doing, riding with him over James Harden.

“Kyrie Irving is the reason that James Harden left! And now we get to this point with his contract, right? And all of a sudden, the Brooklyn Nets didn’t match or agree to what Kyrie wanted them to agree upon. But two years ago, didn’t the Brooklyn Nets try to give him, Kevin Durant and James Harden a contract extension? Didn’t Kyrie Irving turn it down?”

Like the Celtics, the Nets have seen the good and ugly that comes with Irving, but to a greater degree. From his media battles, pandemic fiasco and social media conduct, it would appear as though the Irving experiment in Brooklyn was a bust. With Irving’s future now in question yet again, Perkins believes that the Nets are in no position to prioritize the disgruntled star’s wishes.

“The Brooklyn Nets don’t have to do a damn thing,” Perkins said. “They need to do what’s best for the Brooklyn Nets.”

Thumbnail photo via Wendell Cruz/USA TODAY Sports Images
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