• Olivier Auguste

Kyrie Irving Just Can't Escape LeBron James


Photo Courtesy: Getty/Rob Foldy/Contributor

Where's Kyrie Irving's mind-state at? He says, "I think you guys can feel my attitude is really just redemption next year. Really integrating myself with our team again and really focus on winning a championship.

That's the only thing I'm really worried about. Until I get to that point, then I can't really answer any questions. I'm pretty sure management and I will have a talk, but that talk won't happen now."

The Celtics' all-star guard has already been hounded by the media regarding his contract-extension possibilities. He was sidelined earlier this year with another knee-surgery, only slightly halting Boston's championship run.

The Celtics fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals to the dominance of his former running-mate, LeBron James.

Uncle Drew is eligible for a four-year, $107 million extension. As he's learned through experience and the nature of the finances in the NBA, he understands he doesn't necessarily have to jump to sign right away. He would be leaving around $80 million less than potential earnings if he waits until 2019. In this case he can resign with Boston after opting out of the final year of his contract.

Cynical mastermind Danny Ainge, General Manager of the Boston Celtics, will stop at nothing to fortify his roster. He's known to pull all the stops and tricks to reinforce a team capable of competing and winning an NBA championship.

The Celtics and Kyrie Irving will have to deal with speculation and hush conversation of LeBron James possibly joining their roster this summer. He made clear that isn't his prerogative. Instead, Irving spilled with enthusiasm regarding their young core's performance in the playoffs without his and Gordon Hayward's veteran leadership on the court.

The NBA season is a year-round sport. The offseason will always revolve around who's making what and going where. Even Kyrie has speculation to play with the New York Knicks, deriving from locker room talk finding its way to unnamed/anonymous sources. Contracts and finances are manipulated to make the pieces fit all the time.

Kyrie is also from the tri-state area, New Jersey to be exact. With the injury-prone tag lingering around his reputation, he understands this is a business. He understands he doesn't have to be a Celtic. Even with this season's performance and the burgeoning stars Boston has on deck at the moment, change is imminent. The Boston organization have a huge discount on talent with their young core living on rookie contracts.

They can hold together a promising core at the cost of an otherworldly payroll, or revamp slightly and keep a manageable bill. We'll see how the narrative unfolds.

ESPN insight contributed to this report

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