The Brooklyn Nets are hoping to find a deal to trade wantaway superstar Kyrie Irving after the superstar demanded a move.
The NBA trade deadline will close on Thursday, meaning he will be forced to remain with the team until the summer if no deal is agreed. Irving's demand to be traded, which came on Friday night, seemed to have come out of nowhere considering reports suggested that Irving would be happy to remain with Nets and was in talks to sign a long-term extension.
But once those talks begun, Irving reportedly was unhappy with a stipulation in the contract, something that The Athletic's Shams Charania said he was 'vehemently against', and swiftly rejected the offer before demanding a trade.
The Los Angeles Lakers have been strongly linked for a move for Irving when he becomes a free agent this summer, and it looks like they now have the opportunity to make a deal happen sooner, with the Nets now keen to make a deal happen.
ESPN's NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski has reported: "The Nets are proceeding in talks as though they’re determined to find a deal for Irving ahead of Thursday’s trade deadline, sources said."
It would be a huge blow for the Nets to lose their superstar point guard, who has been in terrific form this season and was named as an All-Star starter, alongside teammate Kevin Durant.
After the trade demand details emerged, James left a cryptic message, after being open about his belief on the Lakers needing to make some moves before the deadline to improve their roster after a dire first half of the season. The 38-year-old tweeted the eyes emoji along with the crown emoji - the latter he posts at the end of most of his tweets in reference to his nickname of 'The King'.
Irving is reportedly seeking a four-year max contract offer, which will be close to $200million.
As well as the Lakers, the Los Angeles Clippers, Dallas Mavericks and Phoenix Suns are reportedly in the running to trade for Irving - all teams who will be hoping to compete for a championship this season. However, teams may be cautious of trading away significant assets in the way or draft picks or young players, with Irving set to become a free agent this summer and could leave if no deal is agreed.