After suffering an embarrassing first-round exit in the 2022 NBA Playoffs, rumors have started to swirl around All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving and his future with the Brooklyn Nets. Irving has a player option in his contract that will allow him to test the free agency market this summer. He may remain committed to helping the Nets end their title drought but as of now, it remains a big question mark if they are willing to give him a five-year, $245 million contract in the upcoming offseason.
NBA Rumors: Clippers Could Acquire Kyrie Irving For Package Including Three Players In Proposed Sign-And-Trade With Nets
Kyrie Irving To LA Clippers
If they fail to reach an agreement regarding a new contract, Irving could be forced to listen to offers from other NBA teams in the 2022 NBA free agency. One of the teams that could try to steal Irving from the Nets is the Los Angeles Clippers. In a recent article, Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report named the Clippers the "surprise landing spot" for Irving this summer. Giving Irving a massive contract will definitely be a huge risk for the Clippers but knowing team owner Steve Ballmer, he's expected to do everything they can to strengthen their chances of ending their title drought next season.
Proposed Sign-And-Trade Deal
With their current financial situation, the Clippers couldn't sign Irving outright as a free agent. To acquire Irving in the 2022 NBA free agency, the Clippers would be needing to engage in a sign-and-trade deal with the Nets. According to Swartz, the Clippers could offer the Nets a trade package that includes Norman Powell, Reggie Jackson, and Luke Kennard in exchange for Irving.
"For Brooklyn, getting back a collection of starters and role players (a package of Norman Powell, Reggie Jackson and Luke Kennard would make the money work) to place next to Durant should at least be considered as well, especially if Ben Simmons can return to be the team's starting point guard."
Clippers Create A Superstar Trio
Sacrificing Powell, Jackson, and Kennard to get Irving would be a no-brainer for the Clippers. Despite his health issues and anti-COVID vaccine stance, Irving is still one of the best active players in the NBA. His potential arrival in Los Angeles would give them a major boost on their backcourt and enable them to create a "Big Three" with Kawhi Leonard and Paul George next season.
Aside from being an incredible playmaker, Irving would also give the Clippers a very reliable third-scoring option behind Leonard and George and an elite three-point shooter. This season, he averaged 27.4 points, 4.4 rebounds, 5.8 assists, and 1.4 steals while shooting 46.9 percent from the field and 41.8 percent from beyond the arc.
Does The Trade Make Sense For Nets?
The proposed sign-and-trade deal would only make sense for the Nets if they manage to convince Kevin Durant to stay even without Irving on their roster. Instead of losing Irving as a free agent without getting anything in return, the Nets would be acquiring three solid role players who would help Durant and Simmons carry the team in the 2022-23 NBA season. The addition of three legitimate floor spacers like Powell, Jackson, and Kennard would also help the Clippers maximize the effectiveness of Simmons, who is expected to replace Irving as the team's starting point guard.