Sept. 15, 2011
WARRIORS PAGE WARRIORS VIDEO
I'm getting ready to board a plane for Las Vegas to see what is going on with the a bunch of Golden State Warriors who are supposed to be down there working out.Last week forwards Dorell Wright and David Lee said several Warriors players had arranged for a long weekend in Vegas -- along with their significant others, wives and family -- in order to build some chemistry heading into the 2011-12 season -- whenever that is.
Because of the NBA lockout, players did this on their own without any consent or communication with the Warriors franchise. When someone mentioned to Warriors owner Joe Lacob on Wednesday night -- at the team's season-ticket holder event -- that perhaps as many as 10 of his players could be showing up to work out, Lacob replied: "I don't know anything about that." The commissioner's office has made it clear they don't want any team executives commenting on the lockout or players.Wright and Lee indicated last week that Monta Ellis, Stephen Curry, Epke Udoh, Jeremy Lin, Jeremy Tyler, Klay Thompson, Charles Jenkins and Louis Amundson were expected.Curry tweeted on Wednesday night that he was heading to Vegas for the get-together, and word is he was already working out Thursday morning.
On Friday afternoon, news broke that Kyrie Irving reportedly requested a trade from the Cavs.
Shortly thereafter, a Twitter account with over 296,000 followers tweeted the following:
[RATTO: Kyrie Irving needs to be traded to one place, and one place only]
A little over an hour later, Kevin Love responded:
On Tuesday night, Irving told Sports Illustrated the Cavs are "in a very peculiar place."
In the weeks between Cleveland's Game 5 loss to the Warriors and the start of free agency, Love was reportedly on the trading block.
The Cavs and GM David Griffin "mutually" parted ways three days before the NBA Draft.
Cleveland is finally finalizing a deal with assistant GM Coby Altman to become the permanent general manager, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.
LeBron James can opt out and become a free agent next summer, and there is already speculation about where he may go.
Man. The last six weeks in Cleveland have been wild...
Drew Shiller is the co-host of Warriors Outsiders and a Web Producer at NBC Sports Bay Area. Follow him on Twitter @DrewShiller
The only way this Kyrie Irving trade request story makes any sense at all is if he demands to go to Houston. And gets there.
Yes, Houston. Home of James Harden. Potential future home of Carmelo Anthony. The Place Where Passing Goes To Die. The Antidote To Everything Warriors.
I mean, Irving reading the tea leaves and knowing the Cavs are about to enter a very dark period in their history is not the news here. Dan Gilbert no longer caring about running a basketball operation without empty offices has been the catalyst for LeBron James looking forward to life on the West Coast. The Cavs are a sinkhole collapsing so fast that the assumptions of them cakewalking to the 2018 NBA Finals are heading directly for the earth’s core.
But it’s where Irving goes that is fascinating, and Houston is the perfect place because (and we are presuming Daryl Morey can pry Anthony from the joke shop that is the New York Knickerbockers):
1) It would turn Golden State’s version of cap hell into a slight checking overdraft by comparison
2) It would make the Rockets’ offense a high-powered mess of glorious proportions
3) It would subject the Warriors to a direct stylistic showdown – namely, whether rapid, smart-minded ball movement is just a fad to be replacing by 21st century offensive stagflation.
Oh, Harden can pass, and Irving can pass, and Anthony . . . well, okay, Harden and Irving can pass. But they all function almost entirely with the ball, which means that at any given moment 66 percent of the Rockets’ most important players will be unhappy.
Thus, this is what we need, and what we need now. Trading Kyrie Irving is just satisfying his whim. Trading him to a place where we can put competing basketball styles to the test – now that would make the Western Conference playoffs worth caring about again.
And the Eastern Conference? Well, we’ve always wanted a relegation system in American sports, and now we’ve got it. Just fly toward the sun and hold your nose.