The Nets said Saturday that they found out about Kyrie Irving’s trade demand not from his teammate, but from Twitter.
Now, after their franchise was rocked by the All-Star’s sudden desire to leave — preferably before the trade deadline this coming Thursday — they’re left to pick up the pieces and play with what’s left. And that doesn’t include Irving, who sat out Saturday against the Wizards with an injury that was as sudden as it was noticeable.
“I was taking a nap and I looked in one of our group chats and I saw it and I was like, ‘Wow,'” starting center Nick Claxton said of Irving’s trade request on Friday. How did you know? “Just caught me off guard. But it is what it is.”
Royce O’Neale also said he found out about Irving’s demand on social media, with no more advance notice than the average fan.
“Similarly [as] Everyone else: Twitter,” O’Neill said.[I was] Surprised but I mean, it’s a new day. We get hip today.”
The Nets had to hoop with a gutted roster. They were already without Kevin Durant, Ben Simmons and TJ Warren before Irving’s injury came to light. Even on Friday, when Irving told the Nets he wanted to be traded, he wasn’t listed on the injury report against Washington.
“Yeah, he reported calf pain, so he’ll be out tonight,” Nets coach Jake Vaughn said before the game. “I told them, we’re not going to make it weird. We’re here to play, we’re here to do a job, show up and do our job. I said you’ve done the first step of this thing. We’re here, we’re showing up. Let’s work to win tonight. And that’s what I’m going to try to keep them focused on.
It wasn’t until Saturday afternoon that Irving suddenly appeared on the injury report with right calf pain. He did not participate in the team walkthrough and did not play against Washington. But Irving — who regularly gets the loudest cheers at Barclays Center, even louder than Kevin Durant — was encouraged when his face flashed up on the scoreboard before Saturday night’s game.
Asked if Irving has let the team down, Vaughn said he wouldn’t speculate about how others feel. Pressed on his thoughts, he said: “I think you have a responsibility as a basketball player as I do as a coach. I show up, I do my job every single day. That’s what I signed up for. And these are my expectations from one to 17.
Irving has had a contentious relationship with the Nets, which has become increasingly strained over the past two years. A pending free agent this summer, he was seeking a four-year, $198.5 million extension.
While the Nets offered him a multi-year contract last week, he was unhappy with the terms the team had set for last season.
“I didn’t ask those questions. There’s a business side to this thing and there’s a human side to this thing,” Vaughan said. “I chose to touch the human side and see him as an individual. I would leave the business side. [general manager] glory [Marks] And that group.
“I’m not going to speculate about things that have been reported. My job is to hopefully be consistent. Hopefully I’ve been that way with you guys and our group. And I’ve been with my guys. Touch each of them together. [Friday]”
Chris Haynes of TNT and Bleacher Report reported that Irving’s feud with the Nets stemmed from the championship stipulation, and that he was so upset by it that he refused to re-sign with Brooklyn. is given even if the team acknowledges it and offers it in full. Unconditional maximum deal that he is eligible for with them.
Both Claxton and O’Neale spoke with Irving, but neither would speculate on whether there was a window for him to change his mind.
“I have no idea. I mean, no idea. I just work here at the end of the day,” said Claxton, who added that he has not and will not try to overpower Irving. will “No. That’s not my job. My job is to come out here every day and compete at a high level, stay healthy and help my team win basketball games.
Asked if Irving was letting the Nets down, Claxton said he wasn’t.
“No. I mean at the end of the day we’re all our own people and we have to do what’s best for us and if that’s what a grown man thinks is best for him, then that’s what’s best for him. ,” Claxton said. “I can’t judge anyone for what they want to do.”
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