Nets insider says some people in L.A. still really feel like Kyrie Irving will join Lakers next year

Zach Stevens
3 Min Read

When Brooklyn Nets general manager Sean Marks issued a statement earlier this week that Kevin Durant is essentially staying put, the Los Angeles Lakers’ dream of acquiring Kyrie Irving seemed all but dead.

But according to Alex Schiffer, a beat writer who covers the Nets for The Athletic, people in Los Angeles still think the Purple and Gold will eventually land the seven-time All-Star.

“You talk to people over in Los Angeles, they still really feel like Kyrie is coming to them next year,” said Schiffer. “I’m curious to see how that goes over with recent events.”

With Durant back on board, the Nets seem to be all in once again on contending for an NBA championship. With him, Irving, Ben Simmons and a cadre of capable role players, they have a roster that seems fully capable of winning it all.

Among the Nets, Boston Celtics and Milwaukee Bucks, not to mention teams such as the Philadelphia 76ers and Miami Heat, the Eastern Conference will be as tough and competitive as it has been in decades.

As of now, the only viable way for the Lakers to get their hands on Irving would be to clear enough cap space to sign him as a free agent next summer after his current contract expires. But Schiffer thinks there still may be a chance the Lakers trade for Irving in a few months.

“I’ve wondered still, if the Nets season goes by the wayside with Kyrie as an attractive rental piece to someone at the deadline, do they swap a deal to get assets back for him?” Schiffer speculated. “I don’t necessarily think today’s news puts it off the table.”

LeBron James has been adamant that L.A. do whatever it can to acquire Irving, and it’s easy to see why.

The two played three seasons together on the Cleveland Cavaliers, reaching the NBA Finals each of those years and winning a title in 2016.

Irving would not only give the Lakers a third major scorer, but also a facilitator and go-to guy in crunch time.

He is also a big fan of Kobe Bryant, and he sees himself as a disciple of the late Lakers legend.

At least for now, the team has moved away from Irving, as it traded for Patrick Beverley on Wednesday night. It remains to be seen if it will make any other moves the rest of this summer.

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Zach has always had a profound love and respect for the Lakers that has inspired him to write about the franchise. He has a great deal of admiration for LeBron James, and his overall knowledge about the NBA has made him a solid addition to the Lakers Daily staff.