Is LeBron’s retirement just a ploy?
Rumors regarding Kyrie Irving’s free agency have resurfaced following the Lakers postseason exit.
ESPN’s Brian Windhorst has suggested that the Lakers are interested in acquiring Irving through a sign-and-trade this summer. This is contrary to Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus previously reporting that Irving agreed to a handshake deal for a four-year extension with the Dallas Mavericks.
"It would take a little bit of maneuvering… but [The Lakers] can get there. They can keep [Austin] Reaves & get Kyrie [Irving]… The way this is ending, it's increasing the chances of it happening."
Brian Windhorst on the Hoop Collective Podcastpic.twitter.com/KUjMOLS4jP
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) May 21, 2023
It is uncertain how much truth there is to these rumors, as the Lakers may not be able to offer Irving the max contract he desires without sacrificing significant roster players. However, the Lakers have a history of seeking out top talent to supplement their team after disappointing seasons. While Irving may be a better player than D’Angelo Russell, acquiring him would come at the cost of Russell’s contract and may disrupt the balance of the Lakers’ team.
There’s also now rumblings about Trae Young, who was also at the game.
We will need to see LeBron’s retirement before putting any stock into it. The Lakers offseason drama is just getting started.