Whether it’s about a flat earth, not seeing the Brooklyn Nets as having a “head coach,” or opting out of the 2020 season restart to protest social injustice, Kyrie Irving never ceases to provide a wonderful hot take.
A couple of months ago, while on Kevin Durant’s podcast The ETCs., Irving appeared to take a veiled shot at a former teammate Cleveland Cavaliers teammate, LeBron James, when he said, “One thing I’ve always been comfortable with, I felt like I was the best option on every team I played for down the stretch… This is the first time in my career I’ve looked down and be like, ‘That motherf—er can make that shot too.’ And he’ll probably do it a lot easier.”
Although there have consistently been rumors of contentious rivalry between the two, Irving played down that sentiment a few days later, calling the hubbub “false narratives.”
Now, we are finally getting the chance to hear how King James really felt about Kyrie’s take. As a guest on the Road Trippin’ podcast with Richard Jefferson, Channing Frye, and Allie Clifton, LeBron gave his honest opinion: “I was a little like, ‘Damn.’ … I played with Kyrie for three seasons. The whole time when I was there, I only wanted to see him be an MVP of our league. I only cared about his success. And it just didn’t align. It just didn’t align. And we were able to win a championship. That’s the craziest thing. We were still able to win a championship, and we could never align. But I only cared about his well-being, both on and off the floor… And it kind of hurt me a little bit.”
LeBron continued to offer praise of Kyrie’s game, saying, “Ky is one of the most talented players I’ve ever played with in my life… I had so much confidence in him. I actually told Kyrie, I told him at one point when we were playing together that if you were not a league MVP someday, then you were selling yourself short. Because that’s how much I believed in him… And it was part of the reason why I came back home. Besides the unfinished business, I came back home because I saw the talent in him.”
Hopefully, we get a chance to see how the saga plays out on February 18, when the Nets head to the Staples Center to face the Lakers in their first matchup of the 2020-2021 season.