The last week-plus has seen all kinds of Kyrie Irving trade rumors, most of which have connected him, general manager Sean Marks and the Brooklyn Nets to the one and only team that appears to have interest: The Los Angeles Lakers.
There have been reports that the Lakers thought a deal was almost done last weekend, scuttlebutt that the two sides could loop the San Antonio Spurs into a complicated, multi-team deal, and whispers of disagreement within the Lakers’ brain trust over whether or not Irving is the best target for the team. It’s all hung over NBA summer league in Las Vegas, with Russell Westbrook and LeBron James watching on from opposite sides of the arena on Friday night as fans chanted for general manager Rob Pelinka to trade his own disgruntled point guard for Brooklyn’s.
So with that context — and a report from Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN during Friday’s broadcast that “the Nets and Lakers are really not engaged right now on Kyrie Irving” — it is notable that Pelinka and Marks were captured having what appeared to be a pretty engaging conversation right next to Woj himself during Saturday afternoon’s games.
Nets’ GM Sean Marks is now talking to Lakers’ GM Rob Pelinka.— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) July 9, 2022
There’s been numerous rumors since Kevin Durant’s trade request that a Kyrie Irving-Russell Westbrook trade has been discussed pic.twitter.com/CZOhR53a3v
Prior to that conversation, however, Marc Stein was the latest to report that we shouldn’t necessarily hold our breath for an imminent Irving trade (via Substack):
League sources maintain that the Nets are A) focused on trying to assemble a palatable Kevin Durant trade before proceeding to Irving scenarios and B) adamant in their resistance to taking back Westbrook in a theoretical Irving swap without, for starters, some first-round draft compensation added by the Lakers. Westbrook, remember, is scheduled to earn nearly $11 million more than Irving next season, which would cost Brooklyn an additional $50 million once luxury-tax penalties are factored in according to a piece earlier this week from my Bleacher Report colleague Jake Fischer.
So, with all that said... What do you think Pelinka and Marks were discussing? I’m guessing their favorite frozen yogurt spots, but I’m sure all of you seasoned lip readers will have some more creative ideas in the comments below.