Report: Kyrie Irving to play for Brooklyn Nets ‘with or without Kevin Durant’

Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – APRIL 17: Kyrie Irving #11 of the Brooklyn Nets and Kevin Durant #7 look on during the first quarter of Round 1 Game 1 of the 2022 NBA Eastern Conference Playoffs against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden on April 17, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

News of Kevin Durant’s trade request from the Brooklyn Nets shook the NBA landscape. In fact, both free agency and the trade market have frozen as the league waits for Durant to be traded.

Teams such as the Phoenix Suns, Miami Heat, and Toronto Raptors have emerged as potential suitors, but no deal has gotten done yet because the Nets’ asking price is sky-high.

In turn, other teams around the league have been asking about other pieces on the Nets. The primary team calling the Nets’ phones is the Los Angeles Lakers, who are trying to trade for Kyrie Irving.

Report: Kyrie Irving plans to play for Brooklyn Nets ‘with or without Kevin Durant’

However, according to a recent report from Brian Lewis of the New York Post, Irving plans on playing for the Nets next year. He has not yet requested a trade, and it looks like he has no plans to do so.

“Another source close to Irving told The Post that the All-Star point guard not only never asked for a trade, but has had every intention of playing for the Nets — with or without Durant,” Lewis wrote.

There were rumblings before the NBA Draft that Brooklyn could look to trade Irving, but instead, he ended up opting into his player option and committing to re-joining the Nets next year.

However, with Durant asking the Nets for a deal, having Irving around without Durant doesn’t make a ton of sense for Brooklyn. It was reported that they won’t commit to him long-term, so trading him is probably their best option.

Irving is one of the best point guards in the league and probably the most skilled point guard of all time, but with how much off-court drama he’s brought with him, the Nets would probably prefer to free themselves of him.

So, while it’s interesting that Irving said he’s willing to stick around regardless of Durant’s standing with the team, the Nets should absolutely be looking to trade him at all costs this summer.