Kyrie Irving is dominating NBA headlines for the second Monday in a row. Last week, it was Shams Charania reporting that contract extension negotiations between Irving and the Nets were deadlocked. The story start an avalanche of subsequent reporting, and speculation about Kyrie's future in Brooklyn. Today, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Lakers are the only team interested in trying to acquire Kyrie from Brooklyn via a sign-and-trade.
Woj including the following in a Monday article on ESPN.com:
"Outside of the Los Angeles Lakers, there are currently no known teams planning to pursue sign-and-trade deals for Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving, sources told ESPN. Irving needs a trade partner to coordinate an agreement on a deal to get a long-term, maximum contract, but only the Lakers have interest in executing a sign-and-trade once free agency opens on Thursday night, sources said."
To execute a sign-and-trade, Irving would first have to opt out of the final year of his current contract with the Nets and then work with the Brooklyn front office on a trade to the Lakers. Woj pointed out that if he opts in, he's no longer eligible for a sign-and-trade and would be shopped as an expiring contract with Brooklyn not soliciting "formal" input from Kyrie on any potential destinations.
The NBA reporter then reminded everyone that Kyrie could also decline his $36.5M option, become a free agent, and then sign with the Lakers for the $6.4M taxpayer mid-level exception.
Kyrie has until Wednesday to decide whether or not to opt into the final year of his deal.