Chauncey Billups was aware of Kyrie Irving's discontent when he was interviewing for the Cleveland Cavalaiers' president's job in June, he told the Vic Lombardi Show on Altitude Sports 950 AM.
“It didn’t really surprise me, as they were doing their due diligence on me, I was doing the same thing,” Billups said. “I knew so much about the situation that the rest of the world doesn’t know, but that’s unfortunate man because he’s such a special talent. And so much of what’s he’s been able to accomplish on the floor, he’s been a beneficiary of LeBron James. That would be alarming to me if I was a team looking to get him."
Billups says he was never contacted by LeBron James in the interviewing process but spoke to the Cavaliers' star after he turned down the job on July 3. He said that he was not bothered by the possibility of James leaving the team after the 2018 season.
"What bothered me more than if LeBron left or not was that I didn’t think they had great assets if you have to do a rebuild, so it was more that than LeBron,” Billups said.
On July 7th, Irving sat down with Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert and asked to be traded. He listed the Minnesota Timberwolves, San Antonio Spurs, Miami Heat or the New York Knicks as potential trade destinations.
According to reports, Irving no longer wants to play second fiddle to James and is looking for a situation in which he can play a more focal role on offense. Windhorst also reported that Irving considered asking for a trade after the Cavaliers won the 2016 title but decided against it.
Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert reportedly offered a contract worth less than $2 million per season. Koby Altman was named the team's full-time general manager after serving as the acting GM.