Nets' Kyrie Irving wants trade before next week's deadline

Brooklyn Nets star guard Kyrie Irving has requested a trade ahead of Thursday’s trade deadline, a person familiar with the situation confirmed to USA TODAY Sports.

The person requested anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about private discussions between Irving and the team.

It is another twist in a turbulent season for Irving and the Nets, who are 31-20 and in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, just 2½ games behind third-place Philadelphia.

Irving, who was named an All-Star last week, averages 27.1 points, 5.3 assists and 5.1 rebounds and shoots 48.6% from the field and 37.4% on 3-pointers through 40 games. He is one of the league’s premier point guards and shotmakers.

Kyrie Irving joined the Nets in 2019.
Kyrie Irving joined the Nets in 2019.

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Irving is in the final season of a four-year, $136.4 million deal he signed in 2019. It will be difficult for the Nets to trade an expiring contract for valuable assets in return unless the Nets dealt him to a team that Irving would like to play for on a long-term deal.

Last week, Bleacher Report reported that Irving sought a long-term extension with the Nets. Irving’s agent and stepmom, Shetellia Irving, told the outlet that “The desire is to make Brooklyn home, with the right type of extension, which means the ball is in the Nets' court to communicate now if their desire is the same.”

But he has also had a tenuous tenure since joining the Nets, including his refusal to get the COVID-19 vaccine, which prevented him from playing in a significant number of games last season, and his promotion this season of an anti-Semitic film that resulted in a suspension from the team after he failed to apologize.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Kyrie Irving asks Brooklyn Nets for trade before Thursday deadline