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Brooklyn Nets

Stephen A. Smith boldly predicts that he and Kyrie Irving ‘will probably never speak again in life’

Kyrie Irving
Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

It’s no secret that Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving was at the center of plenty of controversy in the 2021-22 NBA season.

The guard decided not to get the COVID-19 vaccine, which was a choice that greatly impacted his availability for the Nets. Irving appeared in just 29 regular season games for Brooklyn, and the team landed in the play-in tournament despite having a very talented roster.

Before and during the 2021-22 season, ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith ripped Irving on multiple occasions for the way his decision impacted the Nets.

Now, Smith believes he and Irving will “probably never speak again.”

“Kyrie and I will probably never speak again in life,” Smith said. “I assure you, I won’t lose a minute of sleep over it. The issue is, you gotta be committed to showing up to work. The lack of commitment that people suspect he has, that is on him, not us.”

Irving’s lack of availability for the Nets last season was one of many obstacles the team had to try to overcome. In the end, Brooklyn wasn’t able to get past all of its hurdles, and the team was swept in the first round of the playoffs by the Boston Celtics.

While Irving was available for the playoffs, it was clear from Brooklyn’s first-round performance that the team lacked chemistry. Had the seven-time All-Star played all season, things could have gone differently for the squad.

Irving averaged 27.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 5.8 assists per contest in his 29 games in the 2021-22 regular season. He shot 46.9 percent from the field and 41.8 percent from beyond the arc.

In the playoffs, the veteran averaged 21.3 points, 5.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game while shooting 44.4 percent from the field and 38.1 percent from deep.

With the 2022-23 regular season approaching, the Nets are hoping that Irving and fellow star Kevin Durant will help lead the team to a successful campaign. Ben Simmons is another key player who figures to play a major role for Brooklyn.

The Nets have no shortage of superstar talent, but they’re going to have to completely turn the page from last season if they want to have a great 2022-23 campaign.


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