Kyrie Irving snaps, calls reports of unhappiness in Cleveland ‘all bull’
CLEVELAND — When it comes to talk about Kyrie Irving’s future that comes from a source other than Kyrie Irving, the Cleveland Cavaliers star guard has a message:
Irving said as much prior to the Cavs’ game Saturday vs. the Charlotte Bobcats. He was reacting to comments made by national NBA writer Brian Windhorst, a former Cavs beat writer in Cleveland. In an interview with a national blog, Windhorst indicated Irving and his camp were unhappy with the Cavs.
Irving fired off several tweets Friday night in response.
"Sick to my stomach with all these rumors and accusations," Irving tweeted. "It brings nothing but negativity to the team and (portrays) me as something I’m not. I don’t want or need the attention, so it can stop now."
He later added: "At least be man or woman enough to come and ask me. There’s no such source as ‘Kyrie’s camp.’ nothing but nonsense."
Irving explained his tweets to reporters in Cleveland.
"It was (in response to) the barrage and attack I saw," he said. "I’ve been getting it all season. I don’t deserve it. It’s something that you have to deal with. At a certain point, it’s too much.
"For a third-year player, it’s frustrating. No other third-year player has to go through anything close to what I’m going through. I’m not trying to compare myself to anyone else. It got to the point where I needed to say something. It’s all bull."
Irving will have an opportunity to sign a maximum contract extension with the Cavs this summer. He has not indicated if that’s what he will do — which perhaps has helped fuel the speculation.
The Cavs entered Saturday three games behind the Atlanta Hawks for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. After Saturday, they had just four remaining.
Irving, the No. 1 overall draft pick in 2011, has failed to lead the Cavs to the postseason. He was, however, named Rookie of the Year in 2011-12, and won MVP of the All-Star Game in February. He has led the Cavs in scoring in each of his three seasons.
But this season has been largely a disappointment, as the Cavs were expected to the next step and get into the playoffs after re-hiring coach Mike Brown. The failures led to the firing of former general manager Chris Grant two months ago.
Grant’s dismissal is just one example of how the Cavs have been in the news for many of the wrong reasons this year. There have been reports of in-fighting and players wanting to leave the organization, none of which have been verified, as early as the season’s third week.
"In terms of all the rumors and accusations of what goes on in our locker room — it’s been going on all season, to a certain extent," Irving said Saturday. "It’s all nonsense to me now. It’s part of the business, I get it. It’s part of the job, but to go out and kind of portray my character as something it’s not . . . I’m not an attention seeker, I don’t go out and put all these reports or all these rumors out. But people feel like it’s a good thing to continue to put my name in headlines just to get reads. That’s your job, but at a certain point, it’s gotta stop."
Irving has indicated all year he will address the summer in the summer.
"I can’t say it enough: I love the city of Cleveland," he said. "I love my teammates and my focus is on winning right now."