Kyrie Irving said he “doesn’t plan on going anywhere next season. He wants to be back with the Brooklyn Nets.
In his end-of-season press conference, Brooklyn GM Sean Marks talked about re-establishing the Nets’ grinding, focused culture that was in place a few years ago. Marks said, “We need people here who want to be here. They’re selfless that want to be part of something bigger than themselves.”
Is that Kyrie Irving? Do the Nets want to pay him four years, $190 million — a max four-year contract — to find out?
Irving has a $36.9 million player option for next season. Marks said he has not spoken with Irving and his representatives about whether Irving would pick that up. Also not discussed is whether the Nets offer a contract extension off that deal or if he becomes a free agent and they try to re-sign him.
While he didn’t talk about Irving directly, Marks was pointed out in his end-of-season comments Wednesday, talking about returning to a focused, committed franchise culture that seemed lost the last couple of years.
The Nets will bring back Irving next season because Kevin Durant wants it. The only questions are how many years, how much money (it will be the max), and how the deal is structured. His five-year max for a new contract is $245 million, but the Nets would prefer a four-year deal that lines up with Durant’s recent extension.
But Marks is making it clear he needs more from Irving, who missed the first three months of last season because the All-Star point guard refused to be vaccinated and has taken time off in the middle of the season before. The Nets got to the postseason this year having not spent 82 games building up good habits, while the Celtics had, and the result was a Boston sweep. Brooklyn needs a better commitment to the regular season to maximize their talent in the games that matter.
Marks talked about a couple of other things of interest.
He said that an MRI before Game 4 showed the need for Simmons to have surgery.
Also, Marks said that once Harden made up his mind he wanted out of Brooklyn, there was no real choice for the front office but to trade him.
Here’s more on the Nets
Kyrie Irving on his vaccine-mandate problems: ‘Life of a martyr, bro’ Report: Nets lost $50M-$100M this season PBT Podcast: NBA playoffs and other minutes
Nets GM yet to talk extension with Irving, adds “We’re gonna need availability from everybody” originally appeared on NBCSports.com