People are speculating that Kyrie Irving took a jab at LeBron James after recent comments he made on The Etc with Kevin Durant podcast. In it, Irving said his upcoming season with Durant will be the first time in his career that he'll feel like there's someone else on his team who could make the final shot besides him.
When asked who between him and Durant is taking the final shot with 10 seconds left in a one-point game, Kyrie responded: "Depends on who's hot. I don't see it as anything other than that. One-three pick and roll, or it's an iso for either one of us or it's something great for our team."
Kyrie continued, "One thing I've always been comfortable with is I felt like I was the best option on every team I've played for down the stretch. This is the first time in my career where I can look down and be like, 'That motherf*cker can make that shot too."
It wasn't long before people on social media began speculating that Irving's comments were an underhanded jab at James, who he played with in Cleveland for three seasons. Despite their success together, a run that included three Finals appearances and a championship, Irving eventually requested a trade from the Cavs and he and James had a falling out. With that in mind, it's no surprise that people took Irving's aforementioned comments as a sneak diss aimed at the King. Check out what fans had to say about Kyrie's comments down below.
Meanwhile Lebron is back in the finals for the second time in three years since Kyrie left, and Kyrie has won just one playoff series. https://t.co/wl6BkqvNwg— Justin Termine (@TermineRadio) October 1, 2020
Kyrie Irving is a gift from the content gods. Everyone in our business should be grateful he exists.— Mina Kimes (@minakimes) October 1, 2020
Game 7 of the finals is consistent with what Kyrie been doing his whole career.— Bobby ❄️ (@IceBobbyy) October 1, 2020
He wasn’t lying. pic.twitter.com/m9aFNZDJED
Whether Kyrie believes what he said or not(he’s free to have that type of confidence, not my issue)— A.P. (@Vitricate) October 1, 2020
the fact he worded it that way out loud is hella disrespectful knowing the narrative around LBJ, especially when he was playing for ping pong balls before their run together
4th quarter playoff scoring...— Philly Mikan (@DlONWAlTERS) October 1, 2020
LeBron - 164 points, 40%
Kyrie - 55 points, 34%
LeBron - 120 points, 48%
Kyrie - 99 points, 42%
LeBron - 122 points, 47%
Kyrie - 59 points, 38%
But tell me more about how Kyrie had to close for LeBron...
Lol not really a shot... Lebron is not a shooter this is fact— Sensei Buckets (@ZeroXYHero) October 1, 2020
KD is always the answer. Such a high release. He can get a good look from anywhere. Best scorer ever in my humble opinion.— Jake Schuerman (@twfwrestling) October 1, 2020
If you remove the years he played with LeBron, Kyrie has been super overrated. Cleveland didn’t miss a beat after he left, the Celtics were better while he was injured, and the nets were better off with D-Lo. https://t.co/YU0OmPEodt— ⁶ °𝓖𝓪𝓰𝓮💯🔥🏀 (@BooneGage) October 1, 2020
In the Finals, Kyrie has made ONE (1) career clutch basket. I think you all know the one...— Philly Mikan (@DlONWAlTERS) October 1, 2020
The clutch scoring disparity in their 3 Finals appearances is 22-3 (points) in favor of LeBron, with LeBron outscoring Kyrie every time.
Naturally, something LeBron James said following Kyrie's comments is being taken as a possible response. According to ESPN reporter Dave McMenamin, when asked about what the key is to his relationship with Lakers teammate Anthony Davis, LeBron replied, "We’re not jealous of one another."
LeBron James on the key to his relationship with Anthony Davis: “We’re not jealous of one another”— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) October 1, 2020
LeBron on him and A.D.: "We're not jealous of one another. ... I believe jealousy creeps in a lot (with alpha males). And that's the absolute contrary of what we are."— KEVIN DING (@KevinDing) October 1, 2020
Here's what people had to say about LeBron's possible response to Kyrie:
This def a shot aimed back at Kyrie. 🤣🤣🤣 https://t.co/FhjDNnXIdO— The Wolf Of Mibu 🇯🇲 (@Realrb16) October 1, 2020
Definitely saw what Kyrie said 🤣 https://t.co/5Y6ICUGDyd— A$I Swayze🏁 (@MegatronDGAF) October 1, 2020
And in further proof that NBA players hear and see everything, Davis also made some comments about team chemistry, as pointed out by Lakers writer Kevin Ding.
A.D.: "When you've got two guys who are very selfless and want to win as bad as both of us want to, the rest of it goes away and just takes care of itself. ... No one is jealous (on this team)."— KEVIN DING (@KevinDing) October 1, 2020
So far, there hasn't been much chatter that Davis was also taking shots at Kyrie, but never underestimate NBA Twitter
Now back to the podcast that started all this drama. Another notable moment occured when the conversation turned to the Brooklyn Nets' new head coach, Steve Nash. At one point, Irving seemed to imply that there would be coaching by committee next year in Brooklyn.
Kyrie Irving speaks on the coaching situation: "I don't really see us having a "head" coach. KD could be a head coach, I could be a head coach (some days)."— Alec Sturm (@alec_sturm) October 1, 2020
KD adds: "Jacque Vaughn could be a head coach could do it one day. It's a collaborative effort."
Despite what seems like incendiary rhetoric, NetsRepublic writer Alec Sturm pointed out that both Irving and Durant showed a lot of respect for Nash throughout their conversation.
I want to add, Durant and Kyrie spoke at lengths during the podcast the respect they had for Nash, and those quotes were also tweeted out by me. I don’t want this to be taken out of context. Even Nash has said he’ll need help with certain leadership aspects, being a rookie coach.— Alec Sturm (@alec_sturm) October 1, 2020
Durant on Nash's presence: "I think having Steve there and collaborating with our floor general every day is only gonna yield good results for our scorers like myself and Taurean, Caris and Spencer. Them having that relationship I think is gonna be key for us going forward."— Alec Sturm (@alec_sturm) October 1, 2020
Either way, it should be an interesting season in Brooklyn.