Report: Mavs wouldn’t want D’Angelo Russell as main piece in Kyrie Irving sign-and-trade deal with Lakers

Orel Dizon
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The rumors linking Kyrie Irving to the Los Angeles Lakers have continued to heat up recently, especially because of LeBron James’ statements after getting swept in the Western Conference Finals at the hands of the Denver Nuggets.

However, the Dallas Mavericks might stand in the way of those rumblings coming to fruition.

Irving seems to want a max contract. Considering that he has already turned 31 years old, it’s understandable if the point guard seeks another huge payday.

Because the Lakers might not have enough cap space to sign him outright, their likely path to landing the one-time champion would be via a sign-and-trade deal with his current team. But according to NBA insider Marc Stein, the Mavs remain focused on re-signing Irving and are not interested in a sign-and-trade deal that is headlined by Lakers guard D’Angelo Russell.

“While we await a clear indication about the Lakers’ intentions there, with no verifiable signal to date that pursuing Irving is among their offseason priorities, league sources say that the Mavericks would have no interest in a sign-and-trade with the Lakers that features D’Angelo Russell as the primary Dallas-bound player,” Stein wrote. “All indications are that the Mavericks remain intent on re-signing Irving.”

That could spell bad news for Los Angeles if it is indeed looking to bring in Irving. However, any recent report of such interest is still conjecture. Furthermore, it was already reported earlier this month that the Lakers aren’t keen on acquiring the eight-time All-Star, although that was before James’ hint at retirement that was seen by some pundits as a strategy for the franchise to chase Irving.

It should also be noted that Dallas seems determined to move forward with a pairing of Irving and Luka Doncic.

Of course, their brief time together in the 2022-23 regular season didn’t have the outcome that the team likely desired when it traded for the former Brooklyn Nets star. When the two shared the court, the Mavs won just five of 16 games.

Still, a full training camp and preseason with both players on the squad might give them enough time to learn how to coexist, which is what the front office is probably banking on.

Besides, Dallas already gave up key pieces to land Irving, including Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith and a few draft picks. So, it stands to reason for the Mavs to want to hold onto the former NBA champion.

If the Lakers can’t find a way to get James’ former Cleveland Cavaliers teammate, they will have to look elsewhere to bolster the roster.

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