NBA Hall of Famer Dubs Kyrie Irving Irrelevant at Brooklyn Nets Amid Durant-Harden Pairing

Published 01/15/2021, 4:22 AM EST
DENVER, CO – NOVEMBER 15: Kyrie Irving (11) of the Brooklyn Nets reacts to the game slipping away against the Denver Nuggets during the fourth quarter of Denver’s 101-93 win on Thursday, November 14, 2019. (Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)


The Brooklyn Nets are the talk of the NBA town. After signing the likes of Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant in 2019 and appointing star-studded coaching staff in 2020, the trade for James Harden at the beginning of 2021 continues the trend.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Much has been made of this new ‘Big 3’; are the Nets going to play with two basketballs? Kevin Durant went from the splash brothers to the dribble brothers. But what really prompted the Nets’ to get in Harden?

Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant attend Philadelphia 76ers v Brooklyn Nets game at Barclays Center on December 15, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by James Devaney/Getty Images)

According to Hall of Famer Charles Barkley, it was the Nets’ dwindling faith in Kyrie Irving. He believes that the former OKC duo of Harden and Durant is good enough to contend for a championship, even without Kyrie.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

“I think the Nets have lost faith in Kyrie. And I think actually Kevin is like ‘Na, I better bring James here.’ Because listen even without Kyrie, James and KD together is pretty formidable. I mean they are gonna be just as good with or without Kyrie,” Barkley said on the Dan Patrick show.

Brooklyn Nets brought in Harden as an ‘insurance policy’

Before the season even began, Kyrie was in the papers for all the wrong reasons. The previous flat earth theorist was making extreme statements that attracted negativity in the pre-season. And now, while the season is going on, he has gone AWOL.

GUANGZHOU, CHINA – AUGUST 12: The NBA player James Harden of the Houston Rockets attends a commercial event at Haixinsha Asian Games Theme Park on August 12, 2017 in Guangzhou, China.  (Photo by Stringer/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

So Kyrie might not be the messiah that can lead them alongside Durant. With Harden, they get a guy who shows up to work night in, night out. Hence, according to Sir Charles, Harden is their get out of jail card. He said:

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

“So, I think KD is like ‘Yo man, I can’t trust this dude. He shows up when he wants to, he’s gonna do his own thing. I have got to bring James in as insurance… This is probably the greatest insurance policy that we have ever seen in the NBA.”

NEW YORK, NY – AUGUST 21: James Harden, DeMar DeRozan and Kevin Durant attend the 2014 Summer Classic Charity Basketball Game at Barclays Center on August 21, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Jerritt Clark/Getty Images)

Irrespective of Harden’s shortcomings as a player, his primary focus has always been basketball. With the former Houston Rockets star, they may get some stability. Though by throwing Irving in the mix, it looks more like pineapple on pizza. It will be interesting to see how Nash and Co. turn the situation into a more tasty pepperoni pizza.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

Bharat Aggarwal

757 articles

Bharat Aggarwal is a sports analyst for EssentiallySports, covering Formula 1 and NBA. A Delhi University graduate, Bharat has multi-year experience in sports writing, having closely worked with the content strategy aspect as well. Bharat Aggarwal supports Manchester United, Lewis Hamilton, Cristiano Ronaldo, Rafael Nadal, Dirk Nowitzki, Sachin Tendulkar, Ayrton Senna, Kristaps Porzingis, and Dallas Mavericks.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

essentiallysports's Stories