The Knicks should stay far away from Kyrie Irving
The Boston Celtics bowed out to the Milwaukee Bucks in five games after a 116-91 blowout loss in Game 5. The Bucks have moved onto the Eastern Conference Finals in the NBA Playoffs but the focal point, at least in New York, is on the pending free agency of Kyrie Irving.
Irving was traded to the Boston Celtics in July 2017 after requesting a trade from the Cleveland Cavaliers. His tenure there has been up and down at best, missing all of last year’s postseason and becoming a huge distraction this season. Irving struggled in the playoffs this season and was mentally checked out all season. He didn’t state whether or not he wanted to be with the Celtics after this season and he showed no bearing of leadership when things weren’t going well for Boston.
What does this all mean? Well it means that he has enough red flags to set off a major alarm in the minds of Steve Mills and Scott Perry. The New York Knicks desperately need star power as they continue their quest to become relevant again, and it starts with signing two players to max deals. However, Kyrie Irving shouldn’t be one of those players and here’s why;
He can’t do it on his own
Kyrie Irving is a great Robin but will never be a good Batman due to a couple of issues (that we’ll get to shortly). Either way unless the Knicks plan on wooing Kevin Durant to New York and having Irving be the second player, the Knicks shouldn’t pursue Irving at all.
Durant and Irving have been linked to the Knicks for months now, but nothing is ever a done deal in the NBA. Regardless of what rumors swirl, nothing is certain until the ink dries on the contracts. If Kyrie Irving is going to be the number one star in New York, it’s not going to end well.
He’s extremely injury prone
Kyrie Irving has always been a great player, from his days at Duke (very limited) to now but his injury history has followed him along every step of the way. It started out at Duke where he played 12 games for the Blue Devils after tearing a ligament in his big toe.
During the 2012-13 season he injured his index finger and missed three weeks. In 2014-15 he missed the entire NBA Championship series against the Warriors after re-injuring his knee in overtime in Game 1. He missed the entire 2017-18 postseason with another knee injury and has dealt with lingering injuries all of this season.
Irving is an extremely talented player but the last thing the Knicks need is another Am’are Stoudemire. Sure Irving is a bit younger than Stoudemire was but even so the last thing that we Knicks fans need to see is the word “microfracture surgery of the knee”. We saw it with Porzingis, we saw it with Stoudemire, we shouldn’t have to see it with Irving.
New York will eat him alive
You think the Boston media is bad? Kyrie Irving can barely deal with the media surrounding the Celtics. What makes you think that he will be able to handle the ridiculously callous New York media when things aren’t going well? He isn’t a natural born leader and there’s a reason why he’s better off being a Robin than a Batman.
In addition to the media pressure, he’s going to hate Knicks fans. They’ll get on him for every little thing that he does, every injury that he has and every misstep he takes. He doesn’t belong in New York because he can’t handle the pressure, whether it be from the outside or from inside Madison Square Garden.
This isn’t to say that Kyrie Irving isn’t a fantastic player and a clutch one at that. I mean he put the entire city of Cleveland on his back when they needed him most. However, there’s nothing like playing at Madison Square Garden and for a fanbase with no championships in 46 years, the pressure is always on to produce.
Kyrie Irving is a fantastic player don’t get me wrong, but considering the circumstances surrounding his “disappearance” in Boston during the regular season & playoffs, his lack of leadership skills and his injury history, the Knicks should want no part of him.
This feels very much like an Am’are Stoudemire situation where the Honeymoon is going to be nice but once the first year of marriage comes it’s all downhill with injury and disappointment. Please Knicks, stay away from Kyrie Irving. You don’t want to get burned yet again.