After much speculation as to if and when it would occur, it has officially happened… Kyrie Irving has been traded by the Cleveland Cavaliers.


In the first mega trade of the season, Irving was dealt to the Boston Celtics for all star guard Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic and the Nets first round pick for next season.


Early last month, reports had been widely circulating that Irving has grown frustrated with the Cavs and most notably playing second fiddle to LeBron James.


For someone of Irving’s caliber, it’s understandable as to why you would feel shortened if you were not the number one option on a team, but I pose these set of questions as a rebuttal:


Why was Dwyane Wade so willing to play second fiddle when LeBron went to Miami?


Why was Chris Bosh so willing to be the third option to play with LeBron?


Why was Scottie Pippen so willing to play Robin to Michael Jordan’s Batman?


The answer is because they wanted to win and when you play with the best player in the word, your game is ultimately allowed to open up.


Think about it, Dywane Wade was a top five scorer in this league prior to Lebron’s arrival and a NBA champion in 2006.


Chris Bosh was one of the best big men in the league, a perennial all star and a guaranteed 20 and 10 guy in Toronto where he was the first option.


Scottie Pippen is one of the 50 greatest players of all time who produced with and without Jordan, proving himself to be one of the top players in the NBA in the 90’s.


What makes Kyrie so different from these three guys?


Kyrie entered the league in 2011 and upon his first three years, he never even made the playoffs or even came close for that matter.


LeBron enters the fold in 2014 and you go to three straight Finals, winning one in 2016 and you have just come off your most productive season as a pro last year.


(Boston Globe)

Sure, Irving is one of the most skilled offensive talents in the league. You can make the argument that it should be ranked among the best to ever do it. His devastating handle, ability to create for himself off the dribble and finish at the rim with either hand is too deadly for any defense to even consider slowing down. However, what sets him apart from players like Wade, Bosh and Pippen, one Hall of Famer and two future Hall of Famers?


Why does Irving feel the need to “have his own team” and “be the number one option” per the reports while those three others didn’t?


To me, it’s about ego and pride.


You enter the NBA as the number one pick while only playing 11 college games. Your first three years, you’re the man in Cleveland who at that time was among the worst in the NBA. You go through your entire life as the go to option and the main guy on any given team. Now that LeBron rejoined the fold in Cleveland,  and you become 1a essentially, you feel that you’re being underused and undervalued. Crazy talk.


Now we can talk all day about who made out better in the trade, but this is about Kyrie and what possible, justified reasoning he had for causing this trade to happen.


I mean, you could say that Cleveland didn’t HAVE to trade him. He had two years left on his current deal. You could make the argument that when Kobe Bryant went on a similar “trade me” spree 11-12 years ago, the Lakers still didn’t trade him and we see how that worked out.


This is different though.


Kobe didn’t have a LeBron James playing alongside him or none of that would’ve likely never occurred in the first place. The reason that he was requesting a trade was that he didn’t have any type of help around him, let alone the best player in the world.


So for Irving, this has to be about ego and wanting to be the man. Usually, this is something I can respect about any competitor, but you go from one team who consistently has dominated the East the last three years to another team in the East.


I understand he can’t control what team he went to, but in its most principal form, why sacrifice winning just to be “the guy”?


That’s a question Kyrie can only answer and now that he’s gotten his reported wish and departed from the Cavs, we’ll see if he delivers.


Do you think this trade is a mistake for the Cavs? Let’s talk about it here or find me on Twitter @Phenombc3.