NBA Rumors: Shannon Sharpe Says 'Greater Chance' Kyrie Irving Gets Traded

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JB Baruelo

Days before the 2021-22 NBA season officially begins, rumors have started to swirl around All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving and his future with the Brooklyn Nets. Irving became the center of controversy after he refused to get vaccinated against the COVID-19. "Uncle Drew" was initially expected to miss all the Nets' home games because of existing New York's COVID-19 regulations.

However, the Nets recently announced that Irving won't be permitted to join the practice or play in any of their games until he's a "full participant."

Shannon Sharpe Predicts Nets Trade Kyrie Irving

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In a recent episode of Undisputed, Shannon Sharpe and Skip Bayless of Fox Sports 1 discussed the drama surrounding Irving and the Nets. With the team's decision not to let him play until he gets vaccinated against COVID-19, Sharpe believes that there's a "greater chance" that the Nets would move Irving before the 2021-22 NBA season.

"I don't know what to believe, it's Kyrie and he's unpredictable," Sharpe said, via Twitter. "His behavior makes it difficult, but he's so talented a team will take a chance. Talent trumps all, but at what expense?"

Sixers A Potential Landing Spot For Irving

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During his conversation with Bayless, Sharpe mentioned the Philadephia 76ers as a potential trade partner for the Nets in the deal involving Irving. Like the Nets, the Sixers also currently have a disgruntled star on their roster in Ben Simmons, who has been demanding a trade since the 2021 offseason.

However, according to Sam Amick of The Athletic, the Sixers don't have any interest in swapping Simmons for Irving. As of now, the Sixers are still hoping that they could land a player like Damian Lillard or Bradley Beal in exchange for a trade package centered around Simmons.

Irving's Vaccination Stance Costs Contract Extension

Earlier in the 2021 offseason, Nets general manager Sean Marks expressed strong confidence that they would be able to convince Irving to sign a massive contract extension. However, after he refused to get vaccinated against COVID-19, it seems like Marks is already having second thoughts about keeping Irving long-term in Brooklyn.

In an appearance on The Glue Guy, via Youtube, Shams Charania of The Athletic revealed that the Nets are no longer offering Irving the contract extension that is projected to be worth $187 million over four years. If he won't play in the regular season, Irving is also set to lose $17,153,155 plus another $381,181 per game if they reach the playoffs.

Kyrie Irving Not An Anti-Vaxxer

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Despite his refusal to get protection against COVID-19, Charania said that Irving is not anti-vaccine. His stance is reportedly about showing his support to people who lost their jobs because they didn't want to get vaccinated. One source who spoke to Charania claimed that the Nets point guard wants to be the "voice" for the "voiceless."

As of now, it remains unknown how far Irving is willing to go but if the drama surrounding him and the Nets gets worse, it won't be a surprise if they end up parting ways before the 2022 trade deadline.