Five Perfectly Logical And Understandable Reasons Why Kyrie Irving Would Want Out Of Cleveland » VSB

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Five Perfectly Logical And Understandable Reasons Why Kyrie Irving Would Want Out Of Cleveland

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Perhaps you might have heard that Kyrie Irving asked to be traded from the Cleveland Cavaliers. And that he apparently made this request as early as last year, soon after the Cavs won the championshipAnd that the Cavs were already attempting to trade him this summer, and that this is part of the reason why (former) Cavs general manager David Griffin was let go last month. And that, before Kyrie made his request this year, Lebron was already pushing for him to be traded for Chris Paul. And that Kyrie has ceased contact with the Cavs. And that Lebron claimed to be blindsided and disappointed by Kyrie’s trade request. And that Lebron’s mom’s ex-husband — a middle-aged struggle trap rapper called “Lambo” —  inexplicably inserted himself into this too.

Anyway, the general consensus towards Kyrie’s request seems to be “wtf are you doing, man?” He seems to be in a perfect situation. Playing with Lebron, which allows him to maximize his strength (conjuring buckets out of thin air), minimize his primary weakness (general playmaking), and also ensures that he’ll be on national TV 40 nights a year and will likely be in the NBA Finals again next year. This exposure — plus his aesthetically pleasing game — has helped him be one of the NBA’s five biggest stars despite being maybe the 15th or 20th best player right now. Also, he just turned 25. And if the rumors are true and Lebron is determined to leave Cleveland next year, the Cavs could be Kyrie’s team for the next half decade.

Basically, Kyrie is (at best) misguided and (at worst) like the dumbest motherfucker that ever lived.

Or, perhaps, he isn’t at all.

1. You know that Drake song “Shot For Me” where he establishes himself as the perhaps the Kappaiest nigga of all-time?

The way you walk, that’s me
The way you talk, that’s me
The way you’ve got your hair up, did you forget that’s me?
And the voice in your speaker right now, that’s me
And the voice in your ear, that’s me

Well, a popular sentiment about Kyrie is that Lebron is his Drake, and that all of his successes can be attributed to playing with the King. If this were you, and you (rightly) believed yourself to be as talented as Kyrie believes himself to be, wouldn’t that bother you a bit? Wouldn’t you want an opportunity to prove everyone wrong — especially when you’re about to enter your athletic prime? Like, I don’t realize if the people who lob this criticism at him realize this is exactly the reason why it makes sense for him to bounce.

2. The Cavs are still owned by Dan Gilbert, who is still the worst person in professional sports. And in Kyrie’s six NBA seasons, he’s played for four different coaches and has had three different general managers. There are Jenga castles on buckets of urine more stable than the Cavs’ front office. Even if Lebron leaves after next season, Kyrie has zero reason to have any faith that they’ll stop being a dumpster fire whose only saving graces are being lucky enough to exist a hour away from the hometown of the greatest basketball player since Michael Jordan and being shitty enough after Lebron dumped them to luck themselves into three number one picks

3. Speaking of Lebron, the idea that he makes the game easier for his teammates is a bit of a misnomer. There’s no doubt that for role players, Lebron’s engulfing magnanimity practically force-feeds prime opportunities (and lucrative contracts) for them. But, for players whose skillsets are greater, it forces them to shrink themselves to find space on the King’s court. We saw it with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. And we see it with Kevin Love and Kyrie. And with a player like Kyrie — who began playing with Lebron when he was 21 — you could argue that it’s actually stunted his growth. While circumstances forced many of his contemporaries (namely Steph Curry, John Wall, and Damian Lillard) to develop and learn to lead on steeper curves, Kyrie has had Lebron there and hasn’t had to grow the way he would have had to as the face of the franchise because Lebron is the undisputed alpha there.

Let me put it this way — and I know this analogy is awkward and maybe terrible, but bare with me — it’s basically the difference between living on your own at 18 and living with your parents. Although living with your parents (in certain contexts) might be easier, living on your own — and learning, on the fly, how to cook, clean, and budget — forces you to grow in a way that living with your parents just can’t replicate. And while Wall and Steph and Dame have been learning how to run their own households, Kyrie’s spent the last three years as a guest in someone else’s, and we’ll never know if there’s another level of his game to unlock if Lebron has all the keys.

4. As great as Lebron is, he is a passive-aggressive dramatic — as his lie about being blindsided by Irving’s request clearly exhibits — and I can imagine that it can be exhausting working with someone like that. Lebron has also held the entire franchise hostage by refusing to communicate his plans for 2018. And, if you’re Kyrie, why wait for Lebron to dictate your future — especially since he clearly has no problem dictating yours for you?

5. Cleveland is Cleveland.

And look, I’m from Pittsburgh. Which is basically Cleveland without a suntan. So I’m not going to shit on the rust belt. Because I love it. And shitting on a rusty belt might give me MRSA.

But Cleveland is Cleveland. There’s a reason Bone Thugs n Harmony began Creepin On Ah Come Up with “Cleveland is the city where we come from, so run run.” Because they’re saying “we’re getting the fuck outta this dank hellscape, and y’all need to come with us.”

Ultimately, the general negative sentiment about Kyrie’s request is, if not surprising, hypocritical. For the last half decade, the biggest and most consistent complaint about the league is that all of its stars are conspiring to play together and form superteams instead of beating each other. And Kyrie’s request is essentially saying “You know what? I agree! Lemme see if I can lead a team without Lebron!”

Perhaps you don’t think he’s good enough to do that. But don’t you want him to try?

Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a columnist for And he's working on a book of essays to be published by Ecco (HarperCollins). Damon is busy. He lives in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes. Reach him at Or don't. Whatever.

  • I think number 1 basically covers it. Kyrie’s entire legacy is pretty much tied to Lebron right now. He has his ring (which he hit the game winning shot for) so now he can go off and try to start building his own legacy now, especially since he is still only 25. I don’t think he necessarily wants to go somewhere and be “the man” on a bad team. His list of preferred trade destinations says otherwise, save for NY, which is home for him. The other teams are all in good situations and don’t have stars that would overshadown him like Bron would. At best they would be equal with him. Of course Kyrie can’t control where he goes so I hope it all works out for him.

    Sidenote: It’s weird how everybody maligned the formation of super teams, especially after KD’s decision last year. We actually have a player that’s breaking up a super team and now everybody is like he’s dumb.

  • Me

    I read this article even though the only names I recognize are Lebron, Drake, and Damon. Yet and still, I’m tossing in my $0.02: I will always be for folks, particularly black folks, unapologetically doing what’s best for their own aspirations. So even if this Kyrie person is leaving because his spirit guide says it’s time, I celebrate his choice because no one would bat an eye if he were let go on a whim. Never be more loyal to your job than your job is to you. Get yours before they get a chance to take it back.

    • Dcetstyle

      Bravo!!! Those last two lines are gold.

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    • jtreynol

      I support Kyrie wholeheartedly in whatever decision he makes…never be loyal to someone that isn’t loyal to you…all that being said…if his actual reason for leaving is that he doesn’t want to play with LBJ? That ish cray. But as far as Cavaliers? They’re a dumpster fire waiting to happen.

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  • Brooklyn_Bruin

    1) No mention of the infamous no melanin yacht party?

    2) can’t believe the Reggae Boys lost last night.

    • Brooklyn_Bruin

      also no discussion of latest VSB bae and her wanting to work with Cosby? Mocking his victims?

      • cysinblack

        Cool. She too wants to die on the hill defending Bill Cosby. I want to buy that shirt Damon. Make it happen sir.

      • LMNOP

        Oh wow, that’s too bad. I wonder why? And even if she had Cosby sympathizing leanings, she didn’t have to volunteer that information, but she did. Huh.

        • Brooklyn_Bruin

          I don’t volunteer that I don’t hate pumpkin pie. Some controversial opinions you keep to yoself!

          • cedriclathan

            You out now. Negro card suspended for the next :10 minutes.

          • Val

            Right, like saying pumpkin pie and sweet potato pie taste exactly the same.

      • cedriclathan

        Yea, I posted that over at Val’s hangout. I was wondering the same.

        “I don’t care, I’ll drink the juice. I’ll drink the juice. I’ll take a nap. I don’t give a damn.”
        That was kinda bad.

        • Brooklyn_Bruin

          She coulda been Lupita but went Aisha Tyler

          • cysinblack

            Everyone was claiming her a minute ago because she’s so hood and authentic. Baby her joke and feelings about the Cos are inline with the community in the streets. Believe me the online consensus will have you believing everything you know to be wrong.

            • Brooklyn_Bruin

              The streets seem to an anti R Kelly. Can’t imagine Pill Cosby still getting love.

              Rick Ross I understand. Probably why every time he says some misogynoir stuff no one bats an eye.

              Which makes me wonder if Hannibal gets any love offline.

              • cysinblack

                R Kelly is stranger than Michael Jackson. Hannibal is neither funny nor cute. Lose lose for him since white people are the only ones who care. I witnessed Dave C defend Hannibal for the Cosby mess at The Comedy Store.

          • cedriclathan

            I can kind of see that being delivered in a comedy routine but not for print/online publication.

            • Brooklyn_Bruin

              Comedy is one of those things that really shouldn’t be recorded, imo.

        • Val

          It’s not my hang out.

          • cedriclathan

            As the creator, I always credit you!

      • cysinblack

        She ready clarified it was a joke.

        • Brooklyn_Bruin

          Hilarious, I’m sure.

          • miss t-lee

            It’s not a funny joke, but she is a comedian, after all.
            Tasteless “humor” is their thing.

      • Alessandro De Medici
        • Brooklyn_Bruin

          Sometimes VSB needs a Latifah to set it off!

      • SororSalsa

        Just saw that…I figured that Tiff would Meek this up sooner or later.

      • NonyaB?

        WELL. That’s cancelled! Shortest lived fangirling ever. Just heard of her yesterday and today she’s hyping Creep Cosby? Nah.

    • Why did you mention Cinicinnati and then the infamous yacht party? I used that yacht to describe what the job was like where I interviewed. LOL

  • Val

    I don’t know much about this National Basketball Association stuff but your number one was my thought when I heard about this on another VSB thread. He’s tired of playing in Lebron’s shadow. I get that.

    It’s how Marlon and Jackie and Jermaine and that other guy felt playing behind Michael. All of the credit for the Jackson 5’s success was given to Michael. Sometimes, even if you don’t reach the same heights, you just want to get away from the star and be your own little star.

  • Rastaman

    No one is saying he can’t try to lead a team w/o Lebron because no one knows what is over the horizon but this ninja don’t even believe in horizons because he thinks the earth is flat.
    I keep coming back to that because the earth being flat is on par with the earth being only 5000 years old and so anything you have to say after that is automatically dismissed. Because I can no longer take you seriously as we cannot even agree on basic facts.

  • HouseOfBonnets

    ……. I mean shorty thinks the earth is flat, what did we expect?

    • miss t-lee

      I mean…

    • SororSalsa

      And when you share beliefs like that with B.O.B., that right there is indication of your thought process…

  • Nicholas Peters

    I went to Cleveland for a weekend…for work.. and every person I met wanted to leave

    • Val

      Lol A blast from the past. Hi, Nicholas.

      • Nicholas Peters


    • miss t-lee

      When folks talk about Cleveland I always think of this:

    • Brooklyn_Bruin

      Cleveland >>>>> Cincinnati

      • Nicholas Peters

        That’s like saying h*rpes is better than The Clap

        • Brooklyn_Bruin

          Ohio is the Midwestern Florida

          • SororSalsa

            I’m not sure Ohio’s crazy is quite up to the level of Florida.

      • I’ve never been to Cleveland, and I have to agree. LOL

    • cedriclathan

      Coulda started your own underground railroad, smuggling niqqas out.

    • LMNOP

      Hi Nicholas! Welcome back and sht.

      • Nicholas Peters


    • SororSalsa

      I’m about to take my first trip to Cleveland with the boo, who’s from there. His people cape all day long for it, but I notice that a large number of them cape from other cities…so there’s that.

      • Val


  • Brass Tacks

    As an occasional player of basketball simulators. I feel I am the best equipped here to tackle the topic.

    Kyrie is a virtuoso with the ball, The Neymar of the hardwood. But also like Neymar, he lacks the overall game to be a Ronaldo/ Lebron, Messi/ Curry.

    So that’s going to be a no for me, Bro.

    Kyrie going to the T. Wolves would’ve been tough, tho. A line up that consisted of: KAT, Wiggins, Butler and Irving would’ve been an absolute nightmare for at least the next 7 years.

    • Aintnuthinwrongwitcornbread

      Wolves would’ve had to given up Wiggins, and Wiggins don’t want no part of LeBron after them shenannigans in 2014.

  • Shott3r

    “The Cavs are still owned by Dan Gilbert, who is still the worst person in professional sports.”

    Uh, did Daniel Snyder and James Dolan both die and I missed it?

  • cedriclathan

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