The Cleveland Cavaliers were Kyrie Irving’s team. The third year point guard out of Duke could blow by anybody. He was not just fast, but uncannily strong. He won Rookie of the Year; he made three straight All-Star teams. Irving walked into the gym like a star, and he was treated that way: Nike made Kyrie Irving only the fourth active player to have a signature shoe — joining names like LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Kevin Durant (all league MVPs). Then suddenly two of those guys — James and Irving — were on the same team. Nobody asked Irving if that was cool with him. Didn’t matter, really. James was bigger than basketball — and way bigger than the Cavaliers.
Cleveland was ecstatic, swiftly forgiving James for leaving them four years earlier. But new head coach David Blatt and the lone superstar on the Cavs roster, Kyrie Irving, were blindsided. This was supposed to be Irving’s team and yet with one essay in Sports Illustrated the Cavs became LeBron James’ team. Kyrie Irving never asked for this. The recent news that Irving “ain’t too happy” in Cleveland — speculation by Stephen A. Smith — should hardly be a surprise. After all, the coach hired to lead the Kyrie Irving Cavaliers, David Blatt, is gone. It may not be true at all — Irving might be delighted in Cleveland — but a signature shoe guy usually gets his own team.