Kyrie Irving Leaves Brooklyn, Goes to Dallas

Dallas Mavericks get Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving in a chaotic turn of events prior to the NBA trading deadline. Photo courtesy of New York Times.

Kyrie Irving’s trade to the Dallas Mavericks comes following a tumultuous four seasons with the Brooklyn Nets. 

The Brooklyn Nets will be trading Kyrie Irving to the Dallas Mavericks in exchange for forward Dorian Finney-Smith and guard Spencer Dinwiddie along with a 2027 second round pick, a 2029 first-round pick (unprotected) and a 2029 second-round pick. 

Irving was in the final year of his four-year contract and attempted to work out a contract extension. When his plan merely progressed, Irving allegedly requested that the Nets trade him. 

ESPN reveals that prior to sealing the deal with the Mavericks, the Nets were initially looking into three-way trades that also included the Los Angeles Lakers. The Mavericks’ deal was made in the Nets’ own best interest, as it would allow them to surround then-fellow Nets star Kevin Durant with more players out on the court. 

The Phoenix Suns have now acquired Durant for a trade in three dynamic players and four unprotected future first-round picks. 

In late Oct. 2022, Irving uploaded a post to social media that supported an antisemitic documentary. Initially, Irving refused to apologize for his behavior, he later posted a short apology to his social media. Following these actions, Irving was suspended a minimum of five games on Nov. 3 from the Nets. 

As a result of his suspension, Irving missed eight games total and lost approximately $2 million in salary. As stated by Forbes magazine, Irving recently removed the apology from his platform shortly after he demanded a trade from the Nets. 

Irving’s brand deal with Nike has also been terminated as a spokesperson explicitly revealed to NPR that “Kyrie Irving is no longer a Nike Athlete.” Nike has also stated that they will not be releasing Irving’s new designer shoe, Kyrie 8. Nike co-founder Phil Knight expressed to CNBC that he does not think he will ever work with Irving again. 

According to the New York Times, Irving only played in 143 games out of 278 over the course of his three years spent with the Nets. Irving’s absences at games became more frequent, especially after he refused to take the COVID-19 vaccine amidst the pandemic. Though he was able to participate in the Nets’ away games, Irving could not play in home games due to New York City’s local COVID-19 mandates. Irving faced immense backlash and criticism over his refusal to get vaccinated. Eventually, in an Instagram Live, the basketball player expressed that he is not anti-vaccine. Instead, he claimed that this was just a personal decision for him. 

During this past season, Irving has averaged 27.1 points, 5.1 in rebounds and 5.3 assists. Despite the fact that Irving only participated in 143 games total, he still managed to maintain his maximum-level player status. 

Irving is now eligible to sign with the Mavericks for a $198.5 million four-year maximum extension as well as an $83 million two-year extension, which are both available until June 30.