LeBron James has expressed his interest in acquiring Kyrie Irving, but a deal did not get done. Irving was traded to the Dallas Mavericks and James was left wondering what went wrong like many Lakers’ fans. He left fans speculating even more about the deal after he sent out a cryptic tweet on Feb. 5 from his personal Twitter account: “Maybe It’s Me.”
Maybe It’s Me
— LeBron James (@KingJames) February 6, 2023
James recently did a sit-down interview with ESPN reporter Michael Wilbon. He discussed the Irving trade situation, potentially passing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for the all-time scoring record Tuesday night against the Thunder, and how great he has been playing at 38 years old. The record and his current greatness took a back seat to the Irving situation during this conversation because it was the first time James expressed his feelings about the potential trade since Irving dropped the bombshell on Friday afternoon.
How Does LeBron James Feel About Lakers Not Getting Kyrie Irving?
Wilbon got straight to the point with James and asked him his thoughts on not being able to land Irving.
“Well, I’m definitely disappointed. I can’t sit here and say I am not disappointed in being able to land such a talent and someone I know I have great chemistry with on the floor. He’s someone I know can help you win championships,” said James. “But my focus has shifted to back where it should be and that is this club now and what we have in the locker room.”
LeBron on the Lakers not landing Kyrie.
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) February 6, 2023
Wilbon responded, “Well, that’s a quick pivot, LeBron.”
James replied, “It’s a quick pivot. It doesn’t take me long. I don’t get too excited about the possibilities of things that can be. I kind of envision myself on what it can, but I don’t invest myself all the way in until it happens. When it doesn’t happen, I am back locked in on the job at hand.”
He also finished by saying that he feels the if the Lakers finish the season strong then they could get a bid into the postseason.
Kyrie To Lakers Trade Not Meant To Be
The Nets were able to acquire Spencer Dinwiddie, Dorian Finney-Smith, Markieff Morris, a 2027 second-round pick, a 2029 second-round draft pick and a unprotected 2029 first-round pick. The deal was slightly delayed after it was first reported on Sunday because the Nets were trying to include a third team in the deal. They had high interest in acquiring Fred Vanvleet or Pascal Siakam from the Raptors.
Sources: Brooklyn Nets received Los Angeles Lakers’ proposal that did include team’s two first-round picks (2027, 2029) and Phoenix Suns’ offer of Chris Paul, Jae Crowder and unspecified picks: @NBATV pic.twitter.com/cJuABbaYGy
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) February 6, 2023
Reports say the Lakers initially offered Russell Westbrook and their two first-round picks (2027, 2029), but the Nets responded saying they would need Austin Reaves and Max Christie as well.
The Suns offered Chris Paul, Jae Crowder, and one first-round pick.
The Clippers offered Terrence Mann, Luke Kennard, a first-round pick, and two pick swaps.
Irving made it clear that he wasn’t going to sign with Brooklyn this offseason. The Nets ultimately did what was in their best interest like any person or company has when they have the leverage.
Lakers’ Plans Moving Forward
Irving was traded to the Mavericks but there is still a small window of hope for the Lakers to acquire him this offseason. He hasn’t signed an extension with the Mavericks and is still set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer. The Lakers will have Westbrook off the books this summer and are projected to have $120 million in cap space including their luxury tax space.
Report: The Lakers will remain active on the trade market;
“The 2 teams that have repeatedly popped up as Plan B options for the Lakers are the Jazz and Raptors…The Hornets, Spurs and Bulls are three other teams to watch.”
(via @jovanbuha, https://t.co/ge2Q6iEV30) pic.twitter.com/CVgljHjqR8
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) February 7, 2023
For now, the Lakers said they will remain active with the trade deadline being on Thursday Feb. 9 at 3 p.m. It is reported that they will on the lookout for bigger and smaller deals to improve their team this season.
They are currently 13th in the Western Conference Standings, three games back of the eighth spot, and 1.5 games back on the last play-in spot.