#MixxSports Is Kyrie Irving Wrong to Call Out the Nets?

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Kyrie Irving is one of the NBA’s most talked-about players and has proven to be one of the league’s top guards in the past five years. Irving averaged for his career 22.4 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 5.7 assists off of 46.5% shooting from the field, 38.9% shooting from the three-point line, and 87.6% from the free-throw line. Not to mention he’s a 6-time NBA All-Star, 2-time All-NBA, 2011-12 Rookie of the Year, and 2016 NBA Champion.

All that being said, Irving continually finds himself in the media not just for his razzle-dazzle handles or his exquisite layup package, but for what he says when he talks to the media. Yes, it’s no secret the love-hate (well what maybe more hate than love) relationship Irving has with the media as he has given them some candid soundbites in recent years. From his flat Earth theory to now his recent comments about his new team the Brooklyn Nets needing more pieces to win a championship. Here’s what he had to say following a loss to the Philadelphia 76ers on January 15th via ESPN:

“I mean, it’s transparent. It’s out there. It’s glaring, in terms of the pieces that we need to be at that next level,” Irving said after finishing with 14 points on 6-for-21 shooting in Brooklyn’s 117-106 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers at Wells Fargo Center Wednesday night. “I’m going to continue to reiterate it. We’re going to do the best with the guys that we have in our locker room now, and we’ll worry about all the other stuff, in terms of moving pieces and everything else, as an organization down the line in the summer.

“It’s just something that we signed up for. We knew what we were coming into at the beginning of this season. Guys were going down left and right. [Garrett Temple] is out, [DeAndre Jordan] just got hurt tonight, Wilson [Chandler] is coming back. We’ve got complimentary young guys, as well, that have done a great job in the last three years.

“Collectively, I feel like we have great pieces, but it’s pretty glaring we need one more piece or two more pieces that will compliment myself, [Kevin Durant], DJ, GT, Spence [Dinwiddie], Caris [LeVert], and we’ll see how that evolves.”

Currently, the Nets are sitting at the 8th seed in East (not the West) with a record of 18-25 granted Irving has missed 27 games this season with a shoulder injury. Many have said that this team is better without Irving, but obviously, it’s not showing in their record. The core of this team had not changed much since last season when they were the 6th seed with D’Angelo Russell as their leader. Many would say the addition of a Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant, Deandre Jordan, Garrett Temple, and Wilson Chandler would have made this team better. While Irving was out and Durant not due to return till next season, it became apparent that this team may not be championship ready.

Irving did leave some names out when he mentioned core players on the team, but he did come out and explain those comments as he told reporters that he has talked to his team about what he meant by the comments and that he didn’t mean to single anybody out by listing core players. I, for one, believe it is entirely fair for Irving to feel this way as he wants to win a championship, and obviously being a former champion himself shows that he knows what it takes to hoist the Larry O’Brien trophy. 

All Irving wants to do is compete for a title, and he wants to be surrounded by players who can help take him back to the NBA Finals. Keep in mind, that is why he and KD decided to team up in Brooklyn after seeing the Nets do well last season in hopes to elevate the team to a championship as their outspoken leaders.

If the Nets don’t win it this year, it’s not a problem because they weren’t expected to win this year at all. But if this problem continues next year even with the return of KD and they feel the rest of the team isn’t playing to championship expectations, best believe there will be some changes in Brooklyn.

Born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, I grew up loving the sport of basketball and entertainment altogether. Currently, I am a student at the University of Kentucky with a major in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in Theater.